Oregon Public Record Laws

Citations

ORS 192.410 to 192.505
(https://www.oregonlegislature.gov/bills_laws/ors/ors192.html)

Exemptions to Disclosure

The following records are exempt from disclosure:

  • Trade secrets;
  • Location of archaeological sites or objects;
  • Threatened or endangered species locations;
  • Writings prepared by or under the direction of faculty of public educational institutions, in connection with research, until publicly released, copyrighted, or patented;
  • Computer programs.

Other public records exempt from disclosure include:

  • Inter-or intra-agency communication that are pre-decisional;
  • GIS data provided by private landowners;
  • Security of electricity, gas, sewage, water, telecommunications, etc.;
  • Information reported to Oregon Health Authority.

Access Rights

Every person has a right to inspect records. ORS 192.420(1). Only actual cost can be charged, and fees can be waived if the public interest would be served.

Destruction of Public Records

The decision as to what records are retained or destroyed is a matter of statewide public policy. ORS 192.001

The destruction or other disposal of the following materials do not require specific authorization:

  • (1) Inquiries and requests from the public and answers thereto not required by law to be preserved or not required as evidence of a public or private legal right or liability.
  • (2) Public records which are duplicates by reason of their having been photocopied.
  • (3) Letters of transmittal and acknowledgment, advertising, announcements and correspondence or notes pertaining to reservations of accommodations or scheduling of personal visits or appearances.
    ORS 192.170

All other public records must be retained in accordance with a retention schedule authorized under ORS 192.018 or 192.105, without regard to the technology or medium used to create or communicate the record. ORS 192.108.