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TO AMEND SECTION 30-4-30, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO FEES AND THE TIME WITHIN WHICH CERTAIN RECORDS MUST BE FURNISHED UNDER THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT, SO AS TO PROVIDE RECORDS MUST BE FURNISHED AT CURRENT MARKET VALUE TO THE PERSON REQUESTING THE RECORDS, AND TO PROVIDE WHERE A PUBLIC BODY GRANTS A REQUEST FOR RECORDS, IT MUST FURNISH THOSE RECORDS FOR INSPECTION OR COPYING IMMEDIATELY, BUT NO LATER THAN THIRTY DAYS AFTER THE DATE OF THE FORMAL REQUEST.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Section 30-4-30(b) and (c) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"(b) The public body may establish and collect fees not to exceed the actual cost of searching for or making copies of records. Fees charged by a public body must be uniform for copies of the same record or document. However, members of the General Assembly may receive copies of records or documents at no charge from public bodies when their request relates to their legislative duties. The records must be furnished at the lowest possible cost not to exceed current fair market rates to the person requesting the records. Records must be provided in a form that is both convenient and practical for use by the person requesting copies of the records concerned, if it is equally convenient for the public body to provide the records in this form. Documents may be furnished when appropriate without charge or at a reduced charge where the agency determines that waiver or reduction of the fee is in the public interest because furnishing the information can be considered as primarily benefiting the general public. Fees may not be charged for examination and review to determine if the documents are subject to disclosure. Nothing in this chapter prevents the custodian of the public records from charging a reasonable hourly rate for making records available to the public nor requiring a reasonable deposit of these costs before searching for or making copies of the records.
(c) Each public body, upon written request for records made under this chapter, shall within fifteen days (excepting Saturdays, Sundays, and legal public holidays) of the receipt of any such request notify the person making such request of its determination and the reasons
therefor for this determination. Such a This determination shall must constitute the final opinion of the public body as to the public availability of the requested public record and, if the request is granted, the record must be furnished or made available for inspection or copying within thirty days after the date of the formal request. If written notification of the determination of the public body as to the availability of the requested public record is neither mailed nor personally delivered to the person requesting the document within the fifteen days allowed herein, the request must be considered approved."
SECTION 2. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.
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