Minnesota Office of the Legislative Auditor
The auditor of Minnesota state government

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Access to OLA Workpapers

The Legislative Auditor is subject to the Government Data Practices Act. All records in the possession of the Legislative Auditor are available to the public except for specific exceptions provided by that act and Minnesota Statutes 2016, 3.979, subd. 3. Data classified as not public, i.e., confidential, private, nonpublic, or protected nonpublic data, in the Office of the Legislative Auditor includes:

  1. Data in audit work papers that would not be available from the agency under audit because of the provisions of the Government Data Practices Act.

  2. Data relating to an audit are not public, and with respect to data on individuals are confidential, until the final report of the audit has been published or the audit is no longer being actively pursued. (If a request is denied on this ground, the requester will be told the estimated completion date.)

  3. Data related to an audit but not published in the audit report and that the Legislative Auditor reasonably believes will result in litigation are not public, and with respect to data on individuals are confidential, until the litigation has been completed or is no longer being actively pursued.

  4. Data on individuals that could reasonably be used to determine the identity of an individual supplying data for an audit are private if:

    1. The data supplied by the individual were needed for an audit, and

    2. The data would not have been provided to the Legislative Auditor without an assurance of privacy.

Requests for access to records

A request to inspect or copy records in the possession of the Legislative Auditor should be submitted to the Legislative Auditor or the appropriate deputy. A request should be reasonably specific and must be responded to within two working days.

Data will be made available only during regular office hours. Individuals reviewing data must do so in the presence of a designated member of the Legislative Auditor's staff who will determine whether or not certain data will be made available under the Government Data Practices Act. Normally, such data will be removed prior to the review.

Fees

  1. There will be no charge if the record requested is determined to be not public data. No charge will be made for staff-hours spent in resolving any legal or policy questions pertaining to the request.

  2. No charge will be made for copies of records, including those certified as true copies, that are furnished for official use to any office or employee of the State of Minnesota.

  3. At the discretion of the Legislative Auditor's Office, copies of pertinent records may be furnished without charge to a party having a direct interest in a matter pending before the Office of the Legislative Auditor.

  4. Fees established by this section may be waived or reduced because furnishing the information primarily benefits the general public. Persons seeking a waiver or reduction of fees may be required to submit a statement explaining the intended purpose of the records or otherwise indicating how disclosure will primarily benefit the public and, in appropriate cases, explaining why the volume of records requested is necessary. Determinations pursuant to this paragraph will be made by the Legislative Auditor or the appropriate deputy.

In all other cases, a fee covering the actual costs of searching and reproducing the records will be charged when the costs exceed $25.00. The division having possession of the requested records will keep track of all fees. The following charges and collections will be made:

  1. The reproduction charge per page will be ten cents.

  2. After the first hour spent by professional staff and by clerical staff, the actual hourly wages of the employees involved will be billed. Such costs will include the direct costs of preparing certificates of authenticity. However, in accordance with the Data Practices Act, we will not charge for the costs of separating public and not public data.

  3. Other direct costs, such as for electronic transmittals or electronically-stored copies, may be charged.

Advance Deposit

An advance deposit may be required where it is anticipated that fees will exceed $100.00.

Collection of Fees

The Accounting Unit will collect and deposit the applicable receipts into the appropriate account as dedicated receipts.

Appeal process

The determination of the Legislative Auditor may be appealed pursuant to the provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act relating to contested cases.

Exceptions

On a case-by-case basis, the Legislative Auditor will consider requests for obtaining copies of records by other methods not specified in this policy, for example, using bonded copying firms. Such requests should be in writing and should explain why the request should be approved.

 

More Information

Office of the Legislative Auditor ♦ Room 140, 658 Cedar St., St. Paul, MN 55155