Utah panel supports prison records policy

From the article: “Inmate Michael Luesse sought relief from the committee after administrators refused to waive copy fees for documents, including personal write-ups and policy manuals, he requested under the state’s Government Records Access and Management Act. He made the three records requests in early May and learned more than a month later that Corrections had a new policy, adopted “out of the blue,” that caps free copies at 100 pages per inmate annually.”  Read more here.

It is true that some inmates make excessive and frivolous requests.  On the flip side, inmates are a disadvantaged population with extremely limited access to records, many of which they may indeed need for litigation or simple understanding of policies.  The public has a right to records of public agencies, and that includes inmates.

Further, the article states that the UT DOC charges $0.25 per page.  I am not sure how they can get away with that; at least in Ohio, government agencies can only charge for the actual cost to produce the copies.  The standard charge is generally more like $0.05 per page.

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