REPORT FROM OIP – The state Office of Information Practices (OIP) applauds the 88 agencies (representing 13 state executive departments/offices and the Judiciary) that have uploaded their UIPA Records Request Log semiannual totals to the new Master Log on data.hawaii.gov. A big shout-out goes to the Department of Health, which has 51 agencies reporting on the Master Log. The other departments reporting so far are Accounting and General Services; Attorney General; Budget and Finance; Business, Economic Development and Tourism; Commerce and Consumer Affairs; Education; Labor and Industrial Relations; Land and Natural Resources; Public Safety; and Transportation; as well as the Judiciary and OIP.
OIP recognizes the obvious problems with the summaries of data that have been posted onto the Master Log so far and is working to correct them. There are also obvious reporting problems that OIP will be contacting agencies to correct, such as the numbers of lawsuits filed and fee waivers granted, which should be in whole numbers.
OIP also understands that the numbers reported do not reflect the full six-month period from July 1 to December 31, 2012, as the Log was not launched until the fall. Using this preliminary data, however, it appears that over 301,000 government record requests were routinely fulfilled by the reporting agencies. In addition to the routine requests, the agencies reporting so far had 811 formal requests for records, which entailed a total of 686 hours of search, review, and segregation time. Of the formal requests, 141 (17%) were complex cases, 711 (87%) have been completed, and the median number of days to complete the requests was five days. Of the completed cases, 308 (43%) were granted in full, 19 (2.6%) were denied in full, 81 (11%) were denied in part, and the rest were withdrawn, abandoned, or the requester failed to pay.
OIP looks forward to the Log totals from the remaining state departments and agencies being uploaded onto the Master Log at data.hawaii.gov, so that we can have a much more accurate idea of how Hawaii’s open records law is working and can help agencies to better comply with their UIPA responsibilities. Agencies that need training to use and upload the Log can take advantage of OIP’s convenient and extensive on-line training available on OIP’s training page. A two-hour in-person presentation is also available for those departments that want to supplement their training for large groups of employees.
For the latest news regarding OIP and open government, please check for these emails or the What’s New page at hawaii.gov/oip.