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AG: Agencies can’t charge to inspect records

paper-stackA new opinion from the Arizona Attorney General says public agencies can’t charge a copying fee if a person just wants to review records at the agency’s office.

The opinion released Tuesday also says people can bring their own copying devices to the office and use it to make copies without charge.

The opinion was prompted by a request from the Arizona Ombudsman-Citizens Aide. The agency was following up on a complaint.

The new opinion notes that records maintained by a public body are by law open to inspection during business hours. It says agencies that need to print out copies of electronic records to allow for easier access or to remove non-public information can’t charge for that printing.

Agencies can still charge for copies a person requests.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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