by Linda Baum / edited by Walter Luers, esq.
New Jersey Foundation For Open Government
New Jersey’s Open Public Records Act (OPRA), effective in July 2002, is one of the best tools the public has to obtain information about what government is doing.
OPRA requests must be in writing. While many governmental entities have a specific form for this purpose, you are not required to use it. In fact, legally you can send an email request, with the description of the records you are seeking in the body of the email itself. Importantly, the email must clearly state “OPRA request” in the email. Also, you should include your name, address, phone number and email address so the records custodian may contact you. (There is no legal requirement to identify yourself when making an OPRA request – the OPRA law allows you to submit a request anonymously.)