Supreme Court Gives Broad Meaning to the Term “Public Records.”

The Supreme Court just issued an opinion in Lake v. City of Phx, braodly construing Arizona’s public records law.  The case concerns access to metadata embedded in electronic records which can show, among other things, whether electronic records were subsequently altered.  The Court reversed the Court of Appeals, which gave a narrow construction to the (surprisingly) undefined term “public record” and held that, “if a public entity maintains a public record in an electronic format, then the electronic version, including any embedded metadata, is subject to disclosure under our public records laws.”


This is certainly good news since, as we all know, the devil is in the details.