Q What public record requirements must be met with regard to the Docket of Seized Deadly Weapons, if the Docket is stored electronically?

A There is no general requirement that public records be maintained so that they are instantly available for inspection. Likewise, there are no general prohibitions on where a public body can maintain the records or, with regard to the Docket, where the computers which house the public records must be maintained. Section 45-9-151 governs the Docket of Seized Deadly Weapons. The Docket is a public record by virtue of the definition of Section 25-61-3(b) and access is governed by Section 25-61-5. So long as the public body complies with the Mississippi Public Records Act, there are no restrictions on where electronic documents must be maintained, what software must be used, or where the computer must be located. The municipality should consider adopting procedures concerning access to public records. If no procedures are adopted, a public body must provide access within one day of a written request. If procedures have been adopted, those procedures may address reasonable procedures on “cost, time, pace, and method of access,” and access must be allowed within seven days upon payment of fees in accordance with Section 25-61-7. (Attorney General’s Opinion to Criswell, August 26, 2016)