Cost & Fees

You may have to pay for the records that you request from the County of Powhatan. The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) allows us to charge for the actual costs of responding to FOIA requests. This would include items such as:
  • Copying costs
  • Other costs directly related to supplying the requested records
  • Staff time spent searching for the requested records
It can not include general overhead costs.

Reasonable Charges
A public body may make reasonable charges not to exceed its actual cost incurred in accessing, duplicating, supplying, or searching for the requested records.

Extraneous Fees
No public body shall impose any extraneous, intermediary, or surplus fees or expenses to recoup the general costs associated with creating or maintaining records or transacting the general business of the public body. Any duplicating fee charged by a public body shall not exceed the actual cost of duplication.

Cost Estimates
All charges for the supplying of requested records shall be estimated in advance at the request of the citizen as set forth in subsection F of § 2.2-3704 of the Code of Virginia.

If we estimate that it will cost more than $200 to respond to your request, we may require you to pay a deposit, not to exceed the amount of the estimate, before proceeding with your request. The 5 days that we have to respond to your request does not include the time between when we ask for a deposit and when you respond.

Advance Estimates
You may request that we estimate in advance the charges for supplying the records that you have requested. This will allow you to know about any costs upfront, or give you the opportunity to modify your request in an attempt to lower the estimated costs.

Previous Balances
If you owe us money from a previous FOIA request that has remained unpaid for more than 30 days, the County of Powhatan may require payment of the past due bill before it will respond to your new FOIA request.