FOIA Advisor

Q&A: A Blue Ridge mountain of fees?

Q&A (2015-16)Allan BlutsteinComment

Q.  Can our West Virginia county charge a fee for the time it takes to gather the information in a FOIA request, as well as a fee for printing the materials?

A.    Section 29B-1-3(e) of the West Virginia Freedom of Information Act provides that a public body "may establish fees reasonably calculated to reimburse it for its actual cost in making reproductions of records.  A public body may not charge a search or retrieval fee or otherwise seek reimbursement based on a man-hour basis as part of costs associated with making reproduction of records."