Freedom of Information Law Request

Freedom of Information Law
Under New York State Public Officers Law §87 and §89, municipalities must comply with New York State’s Freedom of Information Law (FOIL), hereby providing the public with access to government records.

FOIL defines a record to be any information kept, held, filed, produced, or reproduced by, with or for an agency, in any physical form whatsoever. The law provides access to existing records, and therefore, an agency need not create a record in response to the request.

The City Attorney’s Office spends a considerable amount of time processing the public’s requests for official City documents under the Freedom of Information Law. For your convenience the City has provided many of the records on our website such as agendas, minutes, the City budget, and information on how to apply for vital statistics such as birth, death, and marriage certificates (which do not fall under FOIL). The search engine at the top of the City’s webpage should be able to help you locate these records.

How to Submit Requests for Records
If the records you seek are not available online, and you need assistance in writing a Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) request, you may print and complete the Freedom of Information Law Request form (PDF). Please note: A signature is required, as well as a mailing address in case the records requested are not available electronically.

These forms may be submitted by mail, in person to the City Attorney’s office, located within the Mayor’s office, by fax, or by email.

The City Attorney’s Office will acknowledge your request within 5 business days of its receipt. The Records Access Officer has up to 20 business days to respond to a request and will respond as soon as possible. All FOIL requests are logged in, forwarded to the appropriate departments for the appropriate record search and then returned to the City Attorney to review.

There is a 25 cents per page copying fee for records. Additional fees apply for photos and large maps.