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In accordance with state law (RCW chapter 42.56) and county code, the public has the right to access records concerning the conduct of government (with the exception of some exemptions set forth by state law). The public records law is mindful of providing this access while also protecting individuals' privacy rights and promoting the efficient administration of government.

Many public records are readily available on kingcounty.gov. Please use the guide below to assist you in requesting public records from King County departments and agencies. 

The Legislative Branch includes the County Council, the Clerk of the Council, the County Auditor, the Office of Citizen Complaints, Board of Tax Appeals and Equalization, King County Television and the Office of Hearing Examiner, the Office of Law Enforcement Oversight and the Office of Economic Forecast and Analysis.

The King County Council is committed to responding to your request for public records in an efficient and prompt manner. In order for us to process your request, we need a clear, specific description of the records that you would like.

We will respond to your request within five business days (excluding holidays) of receiving your request, with an estimate of the time we anticipate it will take to comply with your request.

A number of public records are available online free of charge. Some of these records include:

If you would like to make a public disclosure request related to the departments and agencies listed above, please click on the button below.

For requests related to the County Council, Board of Appeals and Equalization, Hearing Examiner, King County TV, and the Office of Economic Forecast and Analysis, please contact: Janet Masuo, Legislative Records Manager, 206-477-1023, Clerk.Council@kingcounty.gov

For request related to the County Auditor, please contact: Rachel Reitz, Office Manager, 206-477-1032, Rachel.Reitz@kingcounty.gov

For request related to the Ombuds, please contact: Janna Lewis, Deputy Ombuds, 206-477-1050, Janna.Lewis@kingcounty.gov

Requests to review or copy the Legislative Branch's public records may be made in writing by letter, fax, or email. Your request must include the following information:

  • Name, address, telephone and email address of the requester;
  • Sufficient information to identify the public record; 
  • Date of the request; and
  • A statement that the request is not for a list of individuals for commercial purposes.

You may also submit your request to the King County Council using the form below:

 * Items marked with an asterisk are required.

*Your name:

*E-mail address:

*Street address:

Street address:

*City:

*State:

*Zip Code:

Clear and specific description of records request:

Within five business days of receipt of a request, the public records officer shall do one or more of the following:

  • make the records available to the requestor for inspection or copying;
  • send copies to the requestor, if copies are requested and payment terms of payment are agreed upon,
  • if copies are not immediately available, provide the requestor a reasonable estimate of when the records will be available;
  • request clarification from the requestor, if the request is unclear or does not sufficiently identify the requested records. The clarification may be requested and provided by telephone, in which case the public records officer shall make a written record of the clarification. Based on the clarification, the public records officer may revise the estimate of when records will be available. If the requestor fails to clarify the request, the agency need not respond to it.

· deny the request and notify the requestor of the denial, including a written statement of the specific reasons for the denial

All records will be released if they do not fall within the specific exemptions of the Public Records Act or other statutes which exempt or prohibit disclosure of specific information or records. Possible bases for exemption may be found in chapter 42.56 RCW, http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=42.56, or at MRSC, http://www.mrsc.org/Publications/pra09.pdf#page=77.

The Public Records Officer will describe why each withheld record or redacted portion of a record is exempt from disclosure.

  • There is no charge for inspecting public records
  • Black and white copies (8 ½ x 11) are 15 cents per side
  • Mailing includes actual cost of postage and shipping container
  • Other media will incur actual cost of materials
  • Large Requests (RCW 42.56.120)
    • The Legislative Branch agency may charge a deposit of up to ten percent of the estimated cost of an entire request before copying records
    • May provide copies in installments
    • May require advance payment prior to providing additional installments

Payments must be made payable to the Office of the Clerk of the Council.
Cash and Checks are currently the only accepted forms of payment.

Lists of Individuals for Commercial Purposes - Lists of individuals requested for commercial purposes may not be provided, because this is prohibited by state law (RCW 42.56.070 (9)).

 

Third Party Notification – In the event that the requested records contain information that may affect the rights of others and may be exempt from disclosure, the Public Records Officer in accordance with RCW 42.56.540 may, prior to providing the records, give notice to such others whose rights may be affected by the disclosure, including providing a copy of the request.

Later discovered documents – In the event additional responsive records are discovered that existed at the time the request was made, the requestor will be promptly notified by the Public Records Officer and provided an opportunity to review the records and request copies..

Withdrawn or abandoned requests – When the requester either withdraws the request or fails to fulfill his or her obligations to inspect the records, pay the deposit or make final payment within thirty days for the requested copies, the Public Records Officer will close the request and notify the requester the request has been closed.

A requestor may submit a written request petitioning the review of any denied record to:

Chief of Staff
1200 King County Courthouse
516 Third Ave
Seattle, WA 98104
(206) 296-1000

The appeals officer will provide the requestor with a written response.

To obtain records from the executive branch of King County, please email: pra.requests@kingcounty.gov.

Please click here to obtain information on requesting information from the King County Sheriff's Office.

The executive branch includes the following departments:

  • The Office of the Executive, Dow Constantine: pra.requests@kingcounty.gov
  • Executive Services: pra.requests@kingcounty.gov
  • Adult and Juvenile Detention
  • Assessor
  • Community and Human Services
  • Elections
  • Human Resources
  • Information Technology
  • Local Services
  • Metro Transit
  • Natural Resources and Parks (Parks, Solid Waste, Wastewater Treatment, Water & Land Resources)
  • Public Health
  • Transportation
  • Sheriff's Office: click here
King County Superior Court

For court records or questions regarding legal proceedings, please email the Superior Court Clerk's Office at clerksofficecorrespondencedesk@kingcounty.gov, or visit their website.

The Superior Court website has information on civil matters involving more than $300, unlawful detainers, and injunctions; criminal cases; family law, including dissolutions, child support, adoptions, parentage, and domestic-violence protection matters; juvenile offender matters; juvenile dependencies, including abused and neglected children, children in need of services, at-risk youth, and truancies; mental illness and involuntary commitment matters.

King County District Court

For information related to the District Court, please visit their website for a list of resources and contact information for each district.

The District Court website has information on weddings, anti-harassment, civil cases, domestic violence, name changes, tickets and more.

King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office
For public records requests, please visit their website or call 206-477-3296.
Department of Public Defense
For public records requests, please visit their website or contact the Public Records Officer at 206-263-0575 or by email at alharris@kingcounty.gov.
Contact the Council
Main phone:
206-477-1000
TTY/TDD:
206-296-1024
Email:
council@kingcounty.gov