ITEM NUMBER: 3.05 a-d
CHAPTER 3: Wisconsin Statutes
COMPUTER ID: WS-5
Title: Open Records Law, Interpretations of:
Marathon County General Government 1.30
Effective Date: 01-01-86
Authorized By: Marathon County
Date of Last Revision: 10/2007
Sec. 1.30. Definitions.
Authority. Any of the following entities having custody of a record: an office, elected o
appointed official, agency, board, commission, committee, council, depar
tment or public
body corporate and politic created by constitution, law, ordinance, rule or order; or a
formally constituted submit of the foregoing.
(2) Record. Any material on which written, drawn, printed, spoken, visual or electromagnetic
information is recorded or preserved, regardless of physical form or characteristics, which
has been created or is being kept by an authority. Record includes, but
is not limited to,
handwritten, typed or printed pages, maps, charts, photographs, films, recordings, tapes
(including computer tapes), and computer printouts. Record does not include drafts, notes,
preliminary computations and like materials prepared for the originator's personal use or
prepared by the originator in the name of a person for whom the originator is working;
materials which are purely the personal property of the custodian and have no rel
ation to his
or her office; materials to which access is limited by copyright, patent or beq
published materials in the possession of an authority other than a public library which are
available for sale, or which are available for inspection at a public li
Sec. 1.31 Legal custodians.
Each elected or appointed official is the legal custodian of his or her records a
nd the records
of his or her office, but the official may designate an employee of his
or her staff to act as
the legal custodian.
Unless otherwise prohibited by law, the County Clerk or the Clerk's d
esignee shall act as
legal custodian for the County Board and for any committees, commissions, boards or other
authorities created by ordinance or resolution of the County Board.
For every authority not specified in subs. (1) or (2), the authority
's chief administrative officer
is the legal custodian for the authority, but the officer may designate
an employee of his or
her staff to act as the legal custodian.
Each legal custodian shall name a person to act as legal custodian in hi
s or her absence or
the absence of his or her designee.
ITEM NUMBER: 3.05 b
The designation of a legal custodian does not affect the powers and duties of an authority
under this section.
Sec. 132. Procedural information.
Pursuant to § 19.34, Wis. Stats., and the guidelines listed in that s
ection, each authority
shall adopt, prominently display and make available for inspection and copying at its offices, for the
guidance of the public, a notice containing a description of its organization and th
times and places at which the legal custodian from whom and the methods whereby the public may
obtain information and access to records in its custody, make requests for records, or obtain copies
of records, and the costs thereof. Each authority shall also prominently d
isplay at its offices for the
guidance of the public a copy of §§ 19.31 to 19.39, Wis. Stats. This section does
not apply to
members of the County Board.
Sec. 1.33. Access to records; fees.
Applicable statutes. The rights of any person who requests inspection of copies of a record
are governed by the provisions and guidelines of § 19.35(1), Wis. Stats., subject to
limitations contained in § 19.36, Wis. Stats., or other applicable st
Access procedure. Each authority shall provide any person who is authorized to inspect or copy a record which appears in written form under § 19.35(1)(b),
Wis. Stats., or any person who is authorized to and requests permission to photograph a record the form of which does not permit copying under § 19.35(1)(f), Wis. Stats., with facilities comparable to t
hose used by its employees to inspect, copy and abstract the record during es
tablished office hours. An authority is not required by this subsection to purchase or lease photocopying, duplicating, photographic or other equipment or to provide a separate room for the
inspection, copying or abstracting of records.
Each authority shall impose a fee upon the requester of a copy of a record which
may not exceed the actual, necessary and direct cost of reproduction and
transcription of the record, unless a fee is otherwise specifically established or
authorized to be established by the law.
Each authority shall impose a fee upon the requester of a copy of a record for the
actual, necessary and direct cost of photographing and photographic, pro
the authority provides a photograph of a record, the form of which does not permit
Except as otherwise provided by law or as authorized to be prescribed by
authority shall impose a fee upon a requester for locating a record, not
the actual, necessary and direct cost of location, if the cost is $50.00
Each authority shall impose a fee upon a requester for the actual, necessary and
direct cost of mailing or shipping of any copy or photograph of a record which is
mailed or shipped to the requester.
An authority may provide copies of a record without charge or at a reduced charge
where the authority determines that waiver or reduction of the fee is in
ITEM NUMBER: 3.05 c
Each authority shall require prepayment by a requester of any fee or fees imposed
under this subsection if the total amount exceeds $5.00.
Response time. Each authority in acting upon a request for any record shall respond within
the times and according to the procedures set out in § 19.35(4), Wi
Sec. 1.34. Separation of information.
If a record contains information that may be made public and information that may not be
made public, the authority having custody of the record shall provide the information tha
be made public and delete the information that may not be made public from the record before
release. Each authority shall consult with the Corporation Counsel befo
re releasing any
information under this section.
Sec. 1.35. Records retention.
Purpose. The purpose of this section is to establish a County records retention
and authorize destruction of County records pursuant to the schedule on an annual basis.
Records custodians may destroy a record prior to the time set forth in t
he schedule only if
such a record has been reproduced as an original record pursuant to §
§ 16.61(7) or 16.612,
Wis. Stats. Any record not covered by this chapter or any other regulat
ion or law shall be
retained 7 years unless the record is added by amendment to the ordinance and the shorter
period is approved by the State Public Records and Forms Board.
Historical records. The State Historical Society of Wisconsin (SHSW) has waived the
required statutory 60-day notice under § 19.21(5)(d), Wis. Stats.
, for any record marked "W"
(waived notice). SHSW must be notified prior to destruction of a record marked "N" (non-
waived). Notice is also required for any record not listed in this sec
tion. "N/A" indicates not
applicable and applies to any county record designated for permanent ret
Legal custodian means the individual responsible for maintaining records pursuant to § 19.33,
has the meaning defined in § 19.32(2), Wis. Stats.
Retention schedule. Records are maintained by the various departments in the County and
are subject to uniform regulatio
n unless otherwise specified. The retention period and authority
are listed in the records retention schedule which is available for inspection and on file in the
office of the County Clerk.
Destruction after request for inspection. No requested record may be destroyed until after
the request is granted or 60 days after the request is denied. If an action is commenc
§ 19.37, Wis. Stats., the requested record may not be destroyed until a court order is issued
and all appeals have been completed. See § 19.35(5), Wis. Stats.
ITEM NUMBER: 3.05 d
Destruction pending litigation. No record subject to pending litigation shall be destroyed
until the litigation has been resolved.
Microfilming or optical disk storage of department records. Departments may keep and
preserve public records through the use of microfilm or optical disk sto
rage providing that the
applicable standards established in Ch. ADM12, Wis. Adm. Code, and §§ 16.61d(7) and
16.612, Wis. Stats., respectively are met
Secs. 1.36 - 1.39. Reserved.