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Freedom of Information Act

The intent of the Illinois Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) is to provide open access of government records to the public and to ensure that the public has access to information about their government and the decision making process. The Act provides that each public body shall make available to any person, upon submission of a request, inspection or copies of any requested records that are subject to disclosure under the Act. Not all records are subject to disclosure, and the Act defines those exemptions.

FOIA requests and questions regarding the process may be submitted to:

Penny Chanez, FOIA Officer
DuPage County Health Department
111 North County Farm Road
Wheaton, Illinois 60187
Telephone Number: (630) 682-7400 extension x7660
Fax Number: (630) 221-7661
FOIAHealth@dupagehealth.org

The following form may be used for submitting requests:

Download the Request for Public Records Form (pdf. format)

Download Information Specific to Environmental Health Requests (.pdf format)

This Act is not intended to be used to violate individual privacy, nor for the purpose of furthering a commercial enterprise, or to disrupt the duly-undertaken work of any public body independent of the fulfillment of any of the rights of the people to access information (5 ILCS 140/1).

The Act provides established timeframes for responding to FOIA requests. All written requests shall be responded to within five (5) working days (5 ILCS/140/3) following the date the request is received. The requester may be notified of an extension of five (5) working days if the files are voluminous, at different locations, or if other reasons make it impossible to assemble and mail the request out within the normal five (5) day period.

In addition, the public body has twenty-one (21) days to respond to requests for records to be used for commercial purposes. This response may be to: 1) provide the records; 2) deny the request; 3) advise when the records will be provided and the cost associated with providing the records; or, 4) advise the requestor that the request is unduly burdensome.

The first fifty (50) black and white copies of records requested through the Freedom of Information Act are provided at no charge. Copies over fifty (50) may be charged at .15 cents per page for black and white copies. If electronic copies are available and requested, the public body may charge for the cost of purchasing the recording medium (ex: disc, tape or other medium). If a fee is due, you will be contacted with the cost, which should be paid prior to receiving the documents.

Denial of Requests under the Freedom of Information Act

Under the Freedom of Information Act, certain documents may be exempt from disclosure. In addition, a request for records or documents which is denied must adhere to the guidelines established under the Act. When a public body denies a records request, the public body must notify the person making the request in writing within five (5) working days, or within any extended compliance period established by the Act. The denial will include reasons for the denial and provide the requestor with the names and titles of the persons responsible for the denial.

Appeal of Denials under the Freedom of Information Act

If you are denied access to inspect or copy any public records or documents, you may appeal the denial by sending a written notice of appeal to the State of Illinois, Office of the Attorney General, Public Access Counselor at the following address:

Cara Smith
Public Access Counselor
Office of the Attorney General
500 S. 2nd Street
Springfield, IL 62706
Phone: 312-814-5526, or 1-877-299-FOIA (1-877-299-3642)
Fax: 217-782-1396
Email: publicaccess@atg.state.il.us

You may also seek a judicial review of a denial by filing a lawsuit in the State circuit court (5 ILCS 140/11).

For additional information regarding the Freedom of Information Act, please see the Illinois Attorney General's website at: http://foia.ilattorneygeneral.net

Health Department Overview

The DuPage County Health Department was established through a referendum vote in November, 1944, and began operations in March, 1945. The Health Department aims to protect the health of residents and visitors through services provided. The Health Department is certified as a local health department by the Illinois Department of Public Health and as such, must fulfill specified responsibilities. The primary responsibilities of the Health Department include: preventing epidemics and the spread of disease; protecting against environmental hazards and injuries; promoting and encouraging healthy behaviors, responding to disasters and assisting communities in recovery and assuring the accessibility of health services.

The departments reporting to the Board of Health and Executive Director include: Business Administration, Community Health Services, Emergency and Disease Control, Environmental Health and Mental Health. Overall, the Health Department has a staff of 507 full time and 86 part time employees. The operating budget for Fiscal Year 2010 is $48,608,995.

Please refer the following website link to view an organizational diagram of the Health Department:
http://www.dupagehealth.org/org_chart.html

The Health Department operates out of the central office in Wheaton, Illinois, but also has the following satellite locations (refer to website link):
http://www.dupagehealth.org/gen_info/locations.html

The Board of Health establishes policies and approves the budget, programs and services of the Health Department. Please refer to the following website link for more information regarding the Board of Health:
http://www.dupagehealth.org/gen_info/Board_Of_Health.html

To view the Illinois General Assembly website contents pertaining to the Freedom of Information Act, Statute 5 ILCS 140, please click here.