Public Records Office (RCW 42.56)

Public records for a state institution includes any writing in virtually any form, which contains information relating to the conduct of university business and which is prepared, owned, used or retained by the university. This includes, but is not limited to, electronic media, paper, e-mail, microfilm, videotape, magnetic tape, and disks (CDs). Only existing documents are releasable.

Request Procedures
  • Records are requested on a Public Records Request form which can be printed from the following link: printable form or you may request the form by contacting the Public Records Officer at 360-650-2728.
  • Please complete Sections I and II of the form, and be specific in describing the records you want to see.
  • Please submit this form either by mail, email, or by fax (360) 650-4228. You can also submit a request in person by making an appointment with the Public Records Officer.
  • As the facilitator for the release of records, the Public Records Officer will process the request to the appropriate department. If there is a question on whether or not the requested records are disclosable under RCW 42.56, a determination will be sought from legal counsel.
  • The Public Records Officer will respond to a request within five business days of receipt of the request in the Public Records Office. The response may take one of the following forms:
    • Acknowledge the request and give a reasonable date for providing the records. This date may be extended as necessary to accommodate the collection and processing of the records.
    • Provide the requested records.
    • Deny the request and provide an explanation for the denial.
    • Request a clarification of the request.
  • Documents not under any exemptions are prepared for release to the requestor.
  • Cost for Public Records per RCW 42.56.120:
    • Fifteen cents per page for standard black & white paper copies, unless the request is less than 10 pages (no charge)
    • Ten cents per page for any paper documents that are scanned so they can be produced in electronic format
    • One dollar for a CD/DVD
    • Actual cost of postage and shipping container
    This fee must be paid upon receipt of the copied records or receipt of invoice; no future public record requests will be processed without payment of previous requests. The requestor should make a check payable to WWU, Public Records Office, and mail it to the Western Washington University Cashier 516 High St MS-9004 Bellingham, WA 98225.
  • For large requests, WWU may:
    • Provide copies in installments
    • Require a deposit of up to ten percent of estimated total cost prior to making copies
    • Require advance payment before providing further installments
    • Will not provide the next installment until payment is received for prior installment

Page Updated 03.10.2014