(1) The Tennessee Public Records Act ("TPRA")
provides that all state, county and municipal records shall, at all times
during business hours, be open for personal inspection by any citizen of this
state, and those in charge of the records shall not refuse such right of
inspection to any citizen, unless otherwise provided by state law. Accordingly,
the public records of the Agency are presumed to be open for inspection unless
an exemption is otherwise provided by law. Personnel of the Agency shall
provide access and assistance in a timely and efficient manner to persons
requesting access to public records. None of the provisions of this rule shall
be used to hinder access to open public records; however, the integrity and
organization of public records, as well as the efficient and safe operation of
the Agency shall be protected as provided by current law. Concerns about the
provisions or enforcement of this rule should be addressed to the Agency's
Public Records Request Coordinator.
(a) "Records custodian" means the office,
official or employee lawfully responsible for the direct custody and care of a
public record. The records custodian is not necessarily the original preparer
or receiver of the record.
"Public records" mean all documents, papers, letters, maps, books, photographs,
microfilms, electronic data processing files and output, films, sound
recordings, or other material, regardless of physical form or characteristics,
made or received pursuant to law or ordinance or in connection with the
transaction of official business by any governmental agency.
(c) "Public records request coordinator"
means the individual, or individuals, responsible for ensuring public record
requests are routed to the appropriate records custodian and are fulfilled in
accordance with the TPRA. The public records request coordinator may also be a
record" means a public record otherwise open for public inspection from which
protected or confidential information is removed or obscured prior to release
means the person requesting access to a public record, whether inspection or