Records Access Officer
Pursuant to the public records law, G.L. c. 66, § 6A(c), the Records Access Officer for the State Ethics Commission is:
Public Information Officer
State Ethics Commission
One Ashburton Place, Room 619
Boston, MA 02108
Guidance for making a public records request
Learn about how to submit a public records request for records held by the State Ethics Commission
Helpful statutes: The Massachusetts Public Records Law, G.L. c. 66, § 10, describes the process for submitting and responding to public records requests. G.L. c. 4, § 7, cl. 26 defines “public records” and outlines exemptions that may apply to requested records. Please note that there are other statutes which also address public records.
Applicable regulations: The Public Records Law authorizes the Supervisor of Records, who is appointed by the Secretary of the Commonwealth, to issue regulations about public records access. Included in those regulations, 950 CMR 32.00 et seq is general information about the public records process, as well as information on records access, fees, appeals, and other matters.
Secretary of the Commonwealth Public Records Division: The webpage for the Public Records Division of the Secretary of the Commonwealth’s Office has additional information and resources concerning the public records process in Massachusetts.
General guidance for public records requests
- You can submit a public records request to the Ethics Commission by mail, email, or in person. The easiest way is to email the Commission’s record access officer(s).
- Statements of Financial Interest (SFI) from calendar year 2015 to present are available for public inspection here. If you want a SFI from before calendar year 2015, you will need to complete and submit this form to the records access officer.
- The State Ethics Commission can only respond to requests seeking the State Ethics Commission’s records and cannot respond to requests for records held by other entities. Each state agency and municipality has a records access officer who can assist with submitting public records requests.
- Municipal employees typically file ethics disclosures with their municipal agency or town/city clerk. Please contact the applicable municipal agency or town/city clerk for disclosures filed by municipal employees.
- Asking a question does not qualify as a public records request. A public records request seeks “records” that already exist, usually in writing, and/or in one of the formats defined in G.L. c. 4, § 7, cl. 26. The State Ethics Commission is not required to create a record in response to a public records request.
- Please be as specific as possible when describing the records being requested. If applicable, please include relevant date ranges and any other information that may help the State Ethics Commission to identity the records that are being requested.
- The State Ethics Commission’s records access officer can assist you in crafting your public records request.
- Whether or not a State Ethics Commission record is a “public record” depends on a variety of circumstances, some of which may vary by context. Under G.L. c. 268B, §§ 3, 4 and 930 CMR 3.00 et seq the Commission’s preliminary inquiries, initial staff reviews used to determine whether to initiate an inquiry, and requests and responses for legal advice from the State Ethics Commission are confidential and, therefore, not public records. If you’re unsure if something is a public record, please contact the Commission or submit a public records request.
If the State Ethics Commission withholds records or portions of records that are responsive to your request, you may either appeal to the Supervisor of Records following the procedure set forth in 950 CMR 32.08 or seek relief in Superior Court.