Access to Kansas Open Records


The State of Kansas considers all state and local government records to be public unless otherwise restricted by statutes or regulations.  This means that any person may request access to any unrestricted government record.  KDHE stands committed to work with the public in the exercise of its right to access agency records.

The Public’s Right

  • To inspect and obtain copies of public records which are not exempted from disclosure by a specific law.
  • To obtain a copy of the agency's policies and procedures for access to records and to request assistance from the agency's Open Records Officer.
  • To receive a written response to the request within three business days.
  • To receive an explanation if it will take additional time to produce the records.  Reasons for additional time may include voluminous records, complicated request parameters, unresolved legal issues or difficulty in accessing archived records.
  • To receive an explanation of the reason why a request is denied.  We will identify generally the records to be denied, and the specific legal authority for the denial.
  • To bring a private lawsuit or to file a complaint with the Kansas Attorney General's Office if you feel you are wrongfully denied records.

Restrictions

Requests must be for existing records, whether written, photographic, or computerized. The Kansas Open Records Act does not require an agency to provide raw data, answer questions or create reports.

Requests must be in writing and proof of identity provided, if requested.

Certain types of records, identified in KORA, may not be required to be disclosed.

A reasonable fee may be charged for accessing records, covering staff time for processing the request for records and the cost for copying record.

A request may be denied if it creates an unreasonable burden in producing the record or if repeated requests appear to be intended to disrupt other functions of the agency.

How to Request a Record

Requests for records must be made in writing or by e-mail.

If possible, use one of the two KDHE Open Records Request Forms below to submit a request.

Be as specific as possible in making the request and describing the records needed.

Submit the KDHE Open Records Request Form in one of the following two ways:

1.  Send via email to KORA_Officer@kdheks.gov

2.  By fax to 785-296-7119

3.  USPS mail to:

KORA Officer; KDHE;
1000 SW Jackson, Ste. 560;
Topeka, Kansas 66612.

A request by e-mail will probably result in the fastest response.

What Records are Available?

Most records maintained by public entities are open for public inspection and copying.  Records commonly requested include, but are not limited to:

  • Statutes
  • Regulations
  • Policies
  • Minutes/Records of open meetings
  • Salaries of public officials
  • Agency budget documents

Exceptions to the Open Records Act

The Kansas Open Records Act recognizes that certain records contain private or privileged information.  The Act lists several exceptions, including:

  • Personnel information of public employees
  • Medical treatment records
  • Records protected by attorney/client privilege
  • Records closed by the rules of evidence
  • Records containing personal information compiled for census purposes
  • Notes and preliminary drafts
  • Criminal investigation records
  • Several other specific types of records as outlined

A list of additional exemptions can be found in K.S.A. 45-230.
An agency is only required to provide public records that already exist. There is no requirement for the agency to create a record upon request.

Additional Information

If there are questions about KORA requests, contact:

The information contained in this page pertains to laws in effect on July 1, 2013.