Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)

  

Download the FOIA request form - CLICK HERE

Introduction
The Village of Sherman and the Village Clerk's Office supports the policy of providing public access to the public records in the possession of the Village while, at the same time, protecting legitimate privacy concerns, and maintaining administrative efficiency and operational priorities. 

The Illinois Attorney General worked with legislators and open government advocates to draft and pass landmark legislation (Senate Bill 189, Public Act 096-0542) to strengthen the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and Open Meetings Act (OMA) to increase the transparency and accountability of governments at all levels. The new law became effective January 1, 2010.

From here, you can download and read the following frequently asked questions about the new provisions of the FOIA:

·         Frequently Asked Questions (Members of the Public)

·         Frequently Asked Questions (Public Bodies)


Process to Request

Requests for public records shall be submitted to the Village Clerk. Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), (5 ILCS 140/1), the request can be made in writing, either on the form provided here or in letter form directed to the Village Clerk.   Please provide following information in your request for public records:

1.      Name, address, telephone number, and email address if possible;

2.      A description of the records sought, being as specific as possible; and 

3.      If the request is for inspection of records, copies of records, or both.

Village Response

The Village must respond to a FOIA request within 5 business days after the receipt of  the request. Day 1 of the 5-day timeline is the first business day after the request is received by the public body. The date that the request was received by the Village does not count as “Day 1.” That time period may be extended for an additional 5 business days from the date of the original due date if: 

  • The requested information is stored at a different location;
  • The request requires the collection of a substantial number of documents;
  • The request requires an extensive search;
  • The requested records have not been located and require additional effort to find;
  • The requested records need to be reviewed by staff who can determine whether they are exempt from FOIA;
  • The requested records cannot be produced without unduly burdening the public body or interfering with its operations; or
  • The request requires the public body to consult with another public body who has substantial interest in the subject matter of the request.
  • If additional time is needed, the Village must notify the requestor in writing within 5 business days after the receipt of the request of the statutory reasons for the extension and when the requested information will be produced.


Request for Review

If the public body does not respond to your request within 5 business days after receiving it, then their inaction is considered a denial of your request. If that occurs, you can either file a Request for Review with the Attorney General’s PAC or file a case in court. If you choose to file a Request for Review, the request must be sent to:

Office of the Attorney General
Public Access Bureau
500 S. 2nd Street
Springfield, IL 62706
Phone: 217-558-0486
Email:  publicaccess@atg.state.il.us