Freedom Of Information Act
The Virginia Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), § 2.2-3700 section in the Code of Virginia, guarantees citizens of Virginia and representatives of the media access to certain public records.
A record is a writing or recording, regardless of format, that is prepared in the transaction of public business. The public record may be owned by or in the possession of the public body, its officers, employees, or agents.
Citizens have the right to request, inspect and/or receive copies of GRTC’s public records. GRTC has the right to charge a reasonable fee to locate, copy and produce the records you request. You have the right to request that any charges for the requested records be estimated in advance. Typically, GRTC only imposes this fee when a substantial number of documents are requested, or when it will take a significant amount of time to locate and provide the records to you. GRTC requires pre-payment for any record request it estimates will cost $200 or more to answer. Most requests are answered free of charge.
GRTC must respond to your request within five working days of receiving it. “Day One” is considered the day after your request is received. The five-day period does not include weekends or holidays.
At the conclusion of the five day period, GRTC will: Provide you with the requested records; Provide you with an estimate of the cost to comply with your record request and ask for prepayment; Provide you with a written response declaring the requested records are exempt from disclosure; Provide you with a written response declaring that the requested records cannot be located or do not exist; Request more time to comply with the record request.
There is no specific way that a FOIA request must be made. Requests can be made orally or in writing. GRTC prefers that FOIA requests be made in writing. A written FOIA request allows GRTC to refer to the specific inquiry, ask questions to clarify the scope of your request, and to make sure it is providing you with the documents you want.
Your request must identify the records you are seeking with “reasonable specificity.” This is a common-sense standard. It does not refer to or limit the volume or number of records that you are requesting; instead, it requires that you be specific enough so that we can identify and locate the records you are seeking.
The FOIA Officer for GRTC is Joe Dillard and he can be reached at:
Greater Richmond Transit Company
ATTN: FOIA Officer
301 E. Belt Boulevard
Richmond, Virginia 23224
Joe Dillard serves as a point of contact for members of the public requesting GRTC’s public records and coordinates GRTC’s response to all FOIA requests. Any questions regarding FOIA or public record requests from GRTC should be directed to Joe Dillard at email FOIA@ridegrtc.com, by phone at (804)474-9346 or by mail to 301 E. Belt Boulevard, Richmond, Virginia 23224. In addition, the Freedom of Information Advisory Council is available to answer any questions you may have about FOIA. The Council may be contacted by email at email@example.com, or by phone at (804)225-3056 or toll free at 1-866-488-4100.