Freedom of Information Law (FOIL)
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Overview

The Freedom of Information Law (“FOIL”), Article 6 (Sections 84-90) of the NYS Public Officers Law, provides the public right to access to records maintained by government agencies with certain exceptions. 

“Record” means any information kept, held, filed, produced or reproduced by, with, or for this agency, in any physical form whatsoever including, but not limited to, reports, statements, examinations, memoranda, opinions, folders, files, books, manuals, pamphlets, forms, papers, designs, drawings, maps, photos, letters, microfilms, computer tapes or disks, rules, regulations or codes.

Learn more about records access and Open FOIL NY.

If you are seeking records related to a Justice Center investigation, you do not need to file a FOIL request.  

Request Records

Use the Open FOIL NY online form

SUBMIT AN OPEN FOIL REQUEST

 

Mail a written request to:

Records Access Officer
NYS Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs
161 Delaware Avenue
Delmar, New York 12054

E-mail a written request to:

[email protected]

Fax a written request to: (518) 549-1336

Submit a request for records in person:

Our main offices are located at 161 Delaware Avenue, Delmar, New York. Upon entering the secure lobby main entrance of the building, advise Security Staff that you would like to request records. Security Staff will contact the Records Access Office, and a staff member will provide assistance.  Please be advised records require review prior to disclosure. As a result, documents and records will not be immediately available.

FOIL Process

We will send you a letter within five business days of the receipt of a written request for reasonably described records, make such records available, deny such request in writing, or furnish a written acknowledgment of the receipt of such request.  If you have not received a letter within five business days, please contact us at (518) 549-0200 or [email protected].

An acknowledgment letter will provide you with an estimate of when the records you request will be available, which shall be reasonable under the circumstances of the request. This date is determined by the number of documents you request, their format, their availability, the time it takes to redact any information that cannot be disclosed pursuant to FOIL, the time it takes to assemble the documents, and other factors. 

If the records you request require a fee to be paid, you will be notified prior to the records being released to you. Unless a different fee is otherwise prescribed by statute, Public Officers Law §87(1) authorizes an agency to charge a fee of 25¢ per copy for copies of records up 9”x 14”, or the actual cost of reproducing a record. In determining the actual cost of producing a record, an agency may include only:

  • an amount equal to the hourly salary attributed to the lowest paid agency employee who has the necessary skill required to prepare the requested record(s), if at least two hours of agency employee time is needed to prepare a copy of the record(s) requested;
  • the actual cost of the storage devices or media provided to the person making the request in complying with such request; and
  • the actual cost to the agency of engaging an outside professional service to prepare a copy of a record, but only when an agency's information technology equipment is inadequate to prepare a copy, if such service is used to prepare the copy.
     

Once the requested records are prepared, you may receive the records via email, fax, paper, CD/DVD, or USB.  

Records are available for inspection, by appointment, on business days between 9:00a.m.-4:00p.m. at the Records Access Office, 161 Delaware Avenue, Delmar, New York.  You may schedule an appointment for in-person inspection of records by calling (518) 549-0200 or sending an email request to:

[email protected].

Right to Appeal

Under provisions of the Public Officers Law you may appeal a FOIL determination.  If you desire to submit such an appeal, you must do so within 30 days of the written response to your FOIL request. Please include a copy of the original request for records and a copy of the FOIL response letter you received along with your appeal letter to: 

FOIL Appeal Officer
NYS Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs
161 Delaware Avenue
Delmar, New York 12054

You will be informed in writing of the decision within ten business days of our receipt of such an appeal.  Please indicate the FOIL Request Number when corresponding on this subject.

Subject Matter List

The following is a current list of records, by subject matter, that are maintained by this agency.  Some of the listed records may be exempt from disclosure pursuant to the Freedom of Information Law.

DATABASES

VPCR – Vulnerable Persons Central Register
FOIL – Freedom of Information Law Requests Database
SDMC - Surrogate Decision Making Committee
Inmate Complaint Letter Database

 

PROGRAM AREAS

  • Administrative Services
  • Administrative Appeals
  • Administrative Hearings
  • Adult Home Advocacy Program
  • Criminal Background Check Unit/Pre-Employment Checks
  • Criminal Prosecutions
  • Division of Reporting and Analytics
  • Forensics/Segregated Housing Unit Program
  • General Counsel
  • Human Resources
  • Incident Reporting and Investigations
  • Individual and Family Support
  • Ombudsperson Program
  • Out of State Placements
  • Prevention and Quality Improvement
  • Public Information
  • Special Prosecutor/Inspector General
  • State Employee Action Unit
  • Surrogate Decision-Making Committee Program
  • TRAID - Technology Related Assistance for Individuals with Disabilities
  • Training

Guidance and FAQs
Reports
Publications

 

RECORDS OF THE FORMER NYS COMMISSION ON QUALITY OF CARE AND ADVOCACY FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES through June 29, 2013 (CQC)        

DATABASES

  • Adult Home Incident Reports Database
  • Advocacy and Outreach Database
  • Child Abuse and Maltreatment Investigations Database (SCR-Related)
  • Death Database
  • Fiscal Fraud
  • Quality Assurance Investigations Division Database (QAIDD)
  • Technology Related Assistance Equipment Exchange (TRAID-IN)

PROGRAMS

  • Adult Home Advocacy Program
  • CAP - Client Assistance Program
  • Forensic Mental Health Monitoring/Segregated Housing Unit Program
  • Ombudsperson Program
  • PAAT – Protection and Advocacy for Assistive Technology
  • PADD -Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities
  • PAIMI - Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness
  • PAIR-Protection and Advocacy for Individual Rights
  • PATBI Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Traumatic Brain Injury
  • SDMC - Surrogate Decision Making Committee
  • TRAID – Technology Related Assistance for Individuals with Disabilities

Publications
Reports

 

Helpful Tips

The Committee on Open Government, an agency of the NYS Department of State, is responsible for overseeing and advising with regard to FOIL, the Open Meetings Law and the Personal Privacy Protection Law. 

When submitting a FOIL request:

  • Be aware, records related to a Justice Center investigation is a different type of request.
  • Be as specific as possible in describing the requested records. Include relevant dates, names, descriptions, etc. See suggested language for a FOIL request from the Committee on Open Government.
  • If records are available, specify how you want them sent, i.e., via US mail, e-mail or fax. We may choose to send the records by U.S. mail, if you have requested a large volume of records, for security or other important reasons.
  • Include your e-mail, mailing address, and fax number, as well as a telephone number where you can be reached during business hours, if it is necessary to clarify your request.
  • Please note that the agency is not required to create a new record in response to FOIL requests. 
  • Please note that State holidays are not counted as a business day.