Arizona public records aren’t so public

By Christianna Silva | Arizona Sonora News Service

More than a month ago, 19 Arizona agencies were given simple public record requests seeking data on the numbers of those requests those agencies received in 2015 and 2016. Less than half responded.

Of the 19 agencies requested, nine responded, three on the same day it was sent.

Only one agency — Arizona Attorney General’s Office — provided everything requested. Officials there explained they did so because their response was required by law.

One possibility why Arizona agencies deny, reject and ignore such requests is the state’s public records law requires only those requests be filled in a “timely manner” with no specific definition as to what is timely.

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