Right to Know Policies and Procedures

Right to Know (RTK) is to provide procedures and fees for requesting, inspecting and obtaining copies of public records maintained by the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission pursuant to the Pennsylvania Right to Know Law (RTK), 65 P.S. §§67.101, et seq., This policy replaces all prior inconsistent Commission policies.

Request Policy

Persons requesting copies of public records maintained by the Commission must submit a written request to the Commission’s Open Record Officer. The request should identify or describe the records sought with sufficient specificity to enable the Commission to ascertain which records are being requested and the name and address to which the Commission should address its response.

To avoid delays, all requests should state explicitly that the information is being requested under the Right To Know Law (RTKL) and should be made using the RTK Request Form developed by the Office of Open Records.

Written requests may be made by one of the following methods:

  • Deliver the required form in person during the regular business hours of the Commission Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. to:

    Office of the Secretary, Open Records Officer
    2nd floor - 7 North
    400 North Street
    Harrisburg, PA 17120
  • Mail the required form to:

    Office of the Secretary, Open Records Officer
    PA Public Utility Commission
    P.O. Box 3265
    Harrisburg, PA 17105-3265
  • Fax the required form to:

    (717) 783-9526
    ATTN: Open Records Officer

The request should specify the type of access sought by the requester. When no specific type of access is requested, the request will be deemed a request for a paper copy of the identified document(s) that will be sent to the requester by first class U.S. mail.

The requester should also provide additional contact information such as a telephone number, facsimile number and e-mail address to facilitate the processing of a request.

Response Policy

Final Response
The Commission’s Open Records Officer will review the RTKL request and, within five business days of receiving the request, will either (1) grant the request; (2) deny the request; (3) grant the request in part and deny it in part; or (4) provide an interim response to the requester.

If a written request is denied in whole or in part, the Commission will issue a final written response that will set forth the reason(s) for any denial. The response will also include an explanation of the procedure for the requester to appeal the denial.

Interim Responses
The Commission will provide a final response to a RTKL request within five business days unless the Open Records Officer provides an interim response to the requester. The purpose of the interim response is to provide the requester with written notice that additional time will be required to respond to the request.

Method of Response
The Open Records Officer may respond to the request by providing a requester access to inspect a record electronically or as otherwise maintained and designated by the Commission. Unless a longer period of time is needed and communicated to the requester by an "interim response", the RTKL requires that the Commission respond to an RTKL request within five business days.

Computation of Response Times
For purposes of determining the end of the five business day period, the day that a RTKL request is received is not counted. The first day of the five business day period is the Commission’s next business day. Any RTK request received by the Open Records Officer after the close of regular business hours shall be deemed to have been received by that office on the following business day.

Fee Policy

Applicable fees to be charged by the Commission under the RTKL are as follows:

Fees Determined by the Office of Open Records
Under the RTKL, the Office of Open Records has the authority to establish fees for duplication and enhanced electronic access. The range of reasonable fees for duplication are established and posted on the Office of Open Records' website.

Certified Copies and Specialized Documents
The Commission will charge $ .75 per copy for certified copies, when requested by the requester. The Commission will charge the actual cost for postage, facsimile/microfiche or other media, as well as for specialized documents.

Transcripts
Prior to an adjudication becoming “final, binding and non-appealable,” transcripts may be requested through the Commission; however, the stenographer or court reporter is permitted to charge the regular fee for this service.
Following an adjudication becoming “final, binding and non-appealable,” a request for the transcript shall be treated like any other RTKL request and a duplication fee of $.25 per page will be charged.

Reasonable and Necessarily Incurred Costs
As expressly provided by 65 P.S. §67.1307(g), the Commission has the authority to charge requesters reasonable fees for necessarily incurred costs. The Commission will determine and charge such fees on a case by case basis.

General
If the estimated fees that are required to fulfill the RTKL request exceed $100, the Commission may require the requester to pay the estimated amount in advance, either by certified check, or money order. If the requester pays by personal check, this check must first clear to be considered received by the Commission. The demand for prepayment may specify a reasonable period of time in which the requester must make such prepayment. If the requester fails to make prepayment within the specified time, the Commission is not required to produce the records requested. All applicable fees must be paid in order to receive access to the record requested. 65 P.S. §67.901.

Appeals

When a request is denied in whole or in part, the requesters may appeal a denial or deemed denial by writing to:

Office of Open Records
Commonwealth Keystone Building
400 North Street, 4th Floor
Harrisburg, PA 17120

Any appeal must be filed within 15 business days of the mailing date of the Commission’s response or within 15 days of a deemed denial.

For further information regarding appeals, please consult the Office of Open Records' website.

Questions

Questions regarding this policy may be directed to the Commission’s Open Records Office at (717) 787-8009.