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OAG FOIA Officer
Office of the Attorney General
500 S. 2nd Street
Springfield, Illinois 62701
Phone:
1-877-299-FOIA
(1-877-299-3642)
Fax: (217) 782-1396


Public Access Counselor
Office of the Attorney General
500 S. 2nd Street
Springfield, Illinois 62701
Phone:
1-877-299-FOIA
(1-877-299-3642)
Fax: (217) 782-1396


E-mail Foia Officer

E-mail Public Access

E-mail Tech Support

Ensuring Open and Honest Government

FOIA and OMA Portal

The Attorney General's Office has made several security enhancements to our portal site. If you need to take the OMA or FOIA training, you will need to register to the new site. We have included a multi factor authentication to the login process. This is to protect the site and your information.


On the pages of this website, you will find detailed information to help the public and government officials and employees to understand and comply with FOIA and OMA. We encourage you to check this site routinely as new materials are made available.

The Attorney General believes that an open, honest and accountable government, the cornerstone of a democracy, can be achieved only through the free and open exchange of information between government and the public. In Illinois, our most important transparency laws – the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and the Open Meetings Act (OMA) - endeavor to open the workings of government to the public, shed light on government actions and, in the process, strengthen our democracy.

In 2009, The Attorney General's Office worked with legislators and open government advocates to draft and pass landmark legislation (Senate Bill 189, Public Act 096-0542) to strengthen the Freedom of Information Act and the Open Meetings Act to increase the transparency and accountability of governments at all levels. This law went into effect on January 1, 2010 and provides new tools and provisions to make certain the public has timely access to public records and public meetings.

The updated law makes it easier to enforce FOIA and OMA and fight for open and accountable government by making permanent the Public Access Counselor position within the Attorney General's Office and empowering the Public Access Counselor with the authority to resolve FOIA and OMA disputes.

We look forward to working with you to enforce the transparency laws and ensure that our government is open, accessible and accountable to all the people of Illinois.

FOIA

Pursuant to the fundamental philosophy of the American constitutional form of government, it is declared to be the public policy of the State of Illinois that all persons are entitled to full and complete information regarding the affairs of government and the official acts and policies of those who represent them as public officials and public employees consistent with the terms of this Act. Such access is necessary to enable the people to fulfill their duties of discussing public issues fully and freely, making informed political judgments and monitoring government to ensure that it is being conducted in the public interest.

- Illinois Freedom of Information Act, 5 ILCS 140/1.


OMA

What is a Public Body?

It is the public policy of this State that public bodies exist to aid in the conduct of the people's business and that the people have a right to be informed as to the conduct of their business.

- Illinois Open Meetings Act, 5 ILCS 120/1.


Public Access Counselor (PAC)

Who is the Public Access Counselor?

Under the updated law, the Public Access Counselor (PAC) will be a permanent part of the Office of the Attorney General. Working under the direction and supervision of the Attorney General and with a team of attorneys and professional staff, the Public Access Counselor's mission is to help people obtain public documents and access public meetings.

The Attorney General appointed Sarah Pratt to the position of Public Access Counselor. Her contact information is:

Sarah Pratt Public Access Counselor
Office of the Attorney General
500 S. 2nd Street
Springfield, Illinois 62701
Phone:
1-877-299-FOIA
(1-877-299-3642)
Fax: (217) 782-1396
E-mail: public.access@ilag.gov

What does the Public Access Counselor do?

Under the new law, the Public Access Counselor has several responsibilities, including:

Educational Materials

To provide educational materials to the public and to respond to informal inquiries.

Advisory Opinions

To issue advisory opinions on FOIA and OMA in response to requests by public bodies.

Mediate Disputes

To work to resolve or mediate disputes between members of the public and public bodies concerning FOIA requests and compliance with OMA.

Requests for Review

To investigate and issue opinions in response to Requests for Review submitted by members of the public when a FOIA request has been denied by a public body or when it is alleged that a public body has violated OMA.

Binding Opinions

To issue binding opinions on FOIA and OMA in response to Requests for Review submitted by members of the public.

Electronic Training

To provide electronic training to all FOIA Officers and all persons designated by public bodies to receive OMA training.