How to File a Request

The first thing to do before filing a RTK request is to determine which Commonwealth or local agency is most likely to have the records you want. Next, determine who the Open Records Officer is (each agency is required to have one). More tips for filing effective RTK requests are available right here on our website.

How to File an Appeal

All appeals must be made in writing and must be submitted to the Office of Open Records within 15 business days from the mailing date of the Agency's response or the date that the request was deemed denied. If that timeframe expires before you provide the required information to the OOR, you lose your right to appeal and may need to file a new RTK request with the Agency.

Sunshine Act

The Pennsylvania Sunshine Act, 65 Pa.C.S. §§ 701-716, requires agencies to deliberate and take official action on agency business in an open and public meeting. It requires that meetings have prior notice, and that the public can attend, participate, and comment before an agency takes that official action.

Training

The Office of Open Records ("OOR") conducts training on the Right-to-Know Law ("RTKL") at the request of groups that wish to learn about the application of the RTKL, including those seeking records and agencies responding to those requests. In addition, the OOR will often partner with various organizations or associations (such as the Pennsylvania Bar Institute, the Pennsylvania State Associations of Township Supervisors, or the Pennsylvania State Associations of Boroughs) to provide a presenter or panelist.


Find an AORO

Look up a specific Agency Open Records Officer, or register a new Officer.

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PA NewsMedia Assoc. – Mediation Discussion

16 November 2016

Earlier today, I spoke with members of the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association about the mediation program offered by the Office of Open Records. It was a great discussion, and I very much appreciate the invitation. Here’s the presentation I used: Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association – Nov. 16, 2016 – PPTX Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association – Nov. 16, 2016 … Continue reading PA NewsMedia Assoc. – Mediation Discussion


Presentation to PA Economic Development Institute

3 November 2016

On Tuesday, I had the opportunity to discuss the Right-to-Know Law and the Office of Open Records with the Pennsylvania Economic Development Institute at a conference in Monroe County. I very much appreciate the invitation. Here’s the presentation I used: Pennsylvania Economic Development Institute – Nov. 1, 2016 – PPTX Pennsylvania Economic Development Institute – … Continue reading Presentation to PA Economic Development Institute


Presentations from OOR’s 2016 Annual Training

3 November 2016

Last week, the Office of Open Records hosted our annual training session about the Right-to-Know Law and the Sunshine Act at the State Museum in Harrisburg. I made a presentation, as did George Spiess, Chief of Training and Outreach, and Charles Brown, Chief Counsel. Here are the presentations used at the 2016 Annual Training: OOR … Continue reading Presentations from OOR’s 2016 Annual Training


Presentation to Potter County Assoc. of Twp. Officials

22 October 2016

Earlier today, I had the opportunity to discuss the Right-to-Know Law and the Office of Open Records with the Potter County Association of Township Officials in Coudersport. I very much appreciate the invitation. Here’s the presentation I used: Potter County Assoc. of Twp. Officials – Oct. 22, 2016 – PPTX Potter County Assoc. of Twp. … Continue reading Presentation to Potter County Assoc. of Twp. Officials


Presentation to Union County Assoc. of Twp. Officials

21 October 2016

Yesterday evening, I had the opportunity to discuss the Right-to-Know Law and the Office of Open Records with the Union County Association of Township Officials in Mifflinburg. I very much appreciate the invitation. Here’s the presentation I used: Union County Assoc. of Twp. Officials Presentation – Oct. 20, 2016 – PPTX Union County Assoc. of … Continue reading Presentation to Union County Assoc. of Twp. Officials


Presentation at Duquesne Law School

20 October 2016

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of discussing the Right-to-Know Law and the Office of Open Records with a class at Duquesne University School of Law in Pittsburgh. I was particularly honored that former Governor Tom Corbett, who appointed me to serve as Executive Director of the OOR, introduced me to the class. My thanks to … Continue reading Presentation at Duquesne Law School


Supreme Court Ruling in PSEA Case

18 October 2016

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has issued a ruling in PSEA v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, a case involving the home addresses of public school employees. The opinion was authored by Justice Donohue and joined by Chief Justice Saylor and Justices Baer, Todd and Dougherty. Justice Wecht filed a concurring opinion. Both are available here: PSEA v. … Continue reading Supreme Court Ruling in PSEA Case


Chester County Chiefs of Police Association

13 October 2016

Yesterday, I met with the Chester County Chiefs of Police Association to discuss various elements of the Right-to-Know Law. It was an excellent discussion, and I very much appreciate the invitation. Here’s the presentation I used: Chester County Chiefs of Police Association Presentation – Oct. 12, 2016 – PPTX Chester County Chiefs of Police Association … Continue reading Chester County Chiefs of Police Association


Annual Training in Harrisburg on Oct. 26

5 October 2016

This year’s Office of Open Records Annual Training will take place on Wednesday, Oct. 26, at the State Museum in Harrisburg. Senior staff from the OOR will lead this session covering the Right-to-Know Law and the Sunshine Act. The training will touch on the basics of each law, but additional detail will be provided on … Continue reading Annual Training in Harrisburg on Oct. 26


CLE at Widener University Commonwealth Law School

27 September 2016

Earlier today, Charles Brown (Chief Counsel at the Office of Open Records) and I spoke at a continuing legal education at Widener University Commonwealth Law School in Harrisburg. This presentation was also recorded by PCN for airing at a later date. We enjoyed the great questions and thank the school for inviting us. Here’s the … Continue reading CLE at Widener University Commonwealth Law School


Docket Date Title County Status
2016-1932 12/01/2016 Rygalski v. Pennsylvania Department of Health Commonwealth Dismissed: Insufficient
2016-1927 12/01/2016 Kessler v. Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission Commonwealth Withdrawn
2016-1844 12/01/2016 Good v. Pennsylvania Department of Human Services Commonwealth Denied: Moot
2016-1430 12/01/2016 Shiffler v. South Hanover Township Dauphin Withdrawn
2016-1428 12/01/2016 Shiffler v. South Hanover Township Dauphin Withdrawn
2016-1427 12/01/2016 Shiffler v. South Hanover Township Dauphin Withdrawn
2016-1975 11/30/2016 King v. City of Philadelphia, Clerk of Courts Philadelphia Transferred
Date Organization
December 5, 2016, 9:00 AM Municipality of Norristown
December 7, 2016, 10:00 AM South East Chapter of the Assessors' Association
December 8, 2016, 1:00 PM Exeter Borough
January 12, 2017, 9:00 AM Venango County Association of Township Officials
January 12, 2017, 6:00 PM Venango County Association of Township Officials
January 13, 2017, 9:00 AM Grove City Area School District