The Freedom of Information Act is used to ensure that all persons are entitled to full and complete information regarding the affairs of government, and the official acts and policies of those who represent them as public officials. The Freedom of Information Act is also used to make sure that public employees are consistent with the terms of this Act.
This act is not intended to be used to violate individual privacy or to disrupt the duly-undertaken work of any public body independent of the fulfillment of any of the rights of the people to access to information (5 ILCS 140/1).
Unless information falls within an express statutory exemption, it must be disclosed under FOIA
(5 ILCS 140/3).
The public body must generally comply with the request within five (5) working business days (5 ILCS 140/3). Certain exceptions allow an additional five (5) business days. The date that the request is received by the public body does not count as "Day 1". Day 1 of the five-day timeline is the first business day after the request is received by the public body. Saturdays, Sundays, and state holidays are not business days and cannot be counted in the 5 business day time period.
Fees and costs apply to reproducing and certifying public records. If a fee is due, you will be contacted on the cost, which must be paid prior to receiving the documents. (Black and White, letter or legal sized copies, the first 50 pages are free, additional pages beyond the first 50 will cost 15 cents per page. There is a $5.00 fee for copies of all vehicle crash reports.
Commercial Request is when the requestor seeks to use part or all of the public records for sale, resale, or solicitation or advertisement for sales or services. A public body has 21 business days to respond to a request for information that is made for a commercial purpose.