Open Records Request - Texas Public Information Act (TPIA)
Texas Government Code, Chapter 552, gives you the right to access government records; and an officer for public information and the officer’s agent may not ask why you want them. All government information is presumed to be available to the public. Certain exceptions may apply to the disclosure of the information. Governmental bodies shall promptly release requested information that is not confidential by law, either constitutional, statutory, or by judicial decision, or information for which an exception to disclosure has not been sought.
Rights of Requestors
You have the right to:
Receive a copy of the communication from the governmental body asking the Office of the Attorney General for a ruling on whether the information can be withheld under one of the accepted exceptions, or if the communication discloses the requested information, a redacted copy;
Lodge a written complaint about overcharges for public information with the Office of the Attorney General. Complaints of other possible violations may be filed with the county or district attorney of the county where the governmental body, other than a state agency, is located. If the complaint is against the county or district attorney, the complaint must be filed with the Office of the Attorney General.
Responsibilities of Governmental Bodies
All governmental bodies responding to information requests have the responsibility to:
Inform requestors of the estimated charges greater than $40 and any changes in the estimates above 20 percent of the original estimate, and confirm that the requestor accepts the charges, has amended the request, or has sent a complaint of overcharges to the Office of the Attorney General, in writing before finalizing the request;
Request a ruling from the Office of the Attorney General regarding any information the governmental body wishes to withhold, and send a copy of the request for ruling, or a redacted copy, to the requestor;
Procedures to Obtain Information
A. Information To be Released
Cost of records:
Make a timely payment for all mutually agreed charges. A governmental body can demand payment of overdue balances exceeding $100.00, or obtain a security deposit, before processing additional requests from you.
B. Information That May Be Withheld Due To An Exception
By the 10th business day after a governmental body receives your written request, a governmental body must:
- Request an Attorney General opinion and state which exceptions apply;
- Notify the requestor of the referral to the Attorney General; and
- Notify third parties if the request involves their proprietary information.
Requestors may send a letter to the Attorney General arguing for release, and may review arguments made by the governmental body. If the arguments disclose the requested information, the requestor may obtain a redacted copy.
To request information from this governmental body, please contact: Jacqueline Hojem, Public Information Coordinator
Pursuant to Section 552.301(c) of the Texas Government Code, Jacqueline Hojem is the designated Public Information Coordinator. All email or fax request must be forwarded to Attn: Jacqueline Hojem, Public Information Coordinator as follows:
Mail to: Jacqueline Hojem, Public Information Coordinator, PO Box 61429, Houston, Texas 77208-1429
In person: Attn: Jacqueline Hojem, 1900 Main, Houston, Texas 77002
For complaints regarding failure to release public information please contact your local County or District Attorney at:
If you need special accommodation pursuant to the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), please contact our ADA coordinator at 713-739-4000.