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Idaho Public Records

The Idaho Public Records Law (IPRL) provides definitions and exemptions for what constitutes public records, who may access them and what the agency's responsibilities are for holding and providing records that are requested.

The law states that, "Every person has a right to examine and take a copy of any public record of this state and there is a presumption that all public records in Idaho are open at all reasonable times for inspection except as otherwise expressly provided by statute." The law goes on to state that "the custodian of any public record shall give the person, on demand, a certified copy of it if the record is of a nature permitting such copying or shall furnish reasonable opportunity to inspect or copy such record."  Furthermore, "The custodian shall make no inquiry of any person who applies for a public record, except to verify their identity in accordance with section 9-342, Idaho Code, to ensure that the requested record or information will not be used for purposes of a mailing or telephone list prohibited by section 9-348, or as otherwise provided by law, and except as required for purposes of protecting personal information from disclosure under chapter 2, title 49, and federal law. The person may be required to make a written request and provide their name, a mailing address and telephone number."

Public Record is defined as any and all forms of documentation used to record the administration of public office at the state and local levels, unless they are protected from disclosure by statute or court order. This includes handwritten, typewritten, email voice and video recordings, pictures, maps, and so on.

Exemptions include any and all records that would infringe on personal privacy, jeopardize the public safety,  hinder open investigations or otherwise damage the operations of the state and/ or associated entities.

Requests should be made with the relevant government agency.  If you are denied access to the records in Idaho that are not exempted from disclosure, appeals must be filed with the district court in the county where the records are held.  You have 180 days from date of denial to make your formal protest.  If you are unsure the validity of your claim, the Idaho Attorney General's Office may be able to clarify for you

Brief History of STATE

Archeological evidence puts humans in the land we call Idaho as early as 14,500 years ago. Excavations in 1959 at Wilson Butte Cave near Twin Falls, Idaho unearthed many artifacts including arrowheads that rank among the oldest dated artifacts in North America. Native American tribes predominant in the area in historic times included the Nez Perce and the Coeur d'Alene in the north; and the Northern and Western Shoshone and Bannock peoples in the south.

The earliest documented exploration by 'Europeans' happened in 1805 when Lewis and Clark crossed the territory on their famous trek. At the time, the region was part of Oregon Country and was claimed by both Great Britain and the US. The US gained control over the land under the Oregon Treaty in 1846. The region contained what is present day Oregon, Washington and Idaho. Future explorations by others lead to the creation of trading posts and trails leading to Oregon. Missionary work and the fur trade attracted early settlers to the region and in 1809, the first white-owned establishment was constructed. More trading outposts followed including posts for Missouri Fur Company and British owned Hudson's Bay Company. In 1836 Henry H. Spalding established a mission near Lapwai, where he printed the Northwest's first book, established Idaho's first school, developed its first irrigation system, and grew the state's first potatoes.

By the mid to late 1860's, gold had been discovered in Idaho and a population boom occurred as prospectors settled to mine. Other settlers included Mormons, Irish and Spanish. Idaho became a territory in 1863 and a state in 1890.

The early Idahoan economy consisted of the fur trade, mining and agriculture. Today, Idaho is an important agricultural state, producing nearly one third of the potatoes grown in the United States. Other important industries in Idaho are food processing, lumber and wood products, machinery, chemical products, paper products, electronics manufacturing, silver and other mining, and tourism.

The largest industry in Idaho is the science and technology sector. It accounts for over 25% of the State's total revenue and 70%+ of the State's exports (in dollars). Tech companies with major location in Idaho include Micron Technology Inc, Hewlett-Packard, SUN, Dell Inc, and AMI Semiconductor.

Idaho Government Info

The State Government of Idaho is modeled after the US Federal Government in that it consists of 3 branches and a bicameral legislature.  The state is further broken into jurisdictional regions (counties) and within those are the municipalities (cities/ towns).   The court system is broken down into 3 levels: the highest court is the Idaho Supreme Court, the intermediate appellate court is called the Idaho Court of Appeals and the first courts are the Idaho District Courts.  There are 7 Judicial Districts.

IDAHO AGENCIES AND ADDRESSES

Idaho Elected Officials

Attorney General
Address: 700 W. State Street, Boise, ID 83720-0010
Phone: 208-334-2400

Governor
Office of the Governor
P.O. Box 83720
Boise, Idaho 83720
208-334-2100

Lieutenant Governor
Boise, Idaho 83720-0057
Phone (208) 334-2200
or Fax (208) 334-3259

Secretary of State
Mailing address:
PO Box 83720
Boise ID 83720-0080
Telephone: (208) 334-2300

Child Support Services
Address (Mailing):  P.O. Box 70008, Boise Idaho 83707-0108 
Phone:  208-334-2479 or 800-356-9868

Correction, Department of
Address:  1299 N. Orchard St. Suite 110 Boise ID 83706
Phone:  208-658-2000

Education, Department of
Address:  650 West State Street, Boise, ID. 83720-0027
Phone:  208-332-6800

Education, State Board of
Address:  650 West State St, Boise, ID. 83720-0027
Phone:  208-334-2270

Environmental Quality, Department of
Address:  1410 N. Hilton, Boise, ID 83706
Phone:  208-373-0502

Historical Society, Idaho State
Address:  2205 Old Penitentiary Road, Boise, Idaho 83712
Phone:  208-334-2682

Idaho State Judiciary

Clerk of the Courts
451 West State Street
Boise ID 83702

Mailing Address:
Clerk of the Courts
PO Box 83720
Boise ID 83720-0101
Phone:  (208) 334-2210

Idaho Judicial Council
P.O. Box 1397
Boise, Idaho 83701
Phone: (208) 334-5213
Fax: (208) 334-2253

Juvenile Corrections, Department of
Address:  954 W. Jefferson St., Boise, ID 83720-0285
Phone:  208-334-5100

Lands, Department of
Address:  300 North 6th Street Suite 103, Boise ID 83720-0050
Phone:  208-334-0200

Libraries, Idaho Commission for
Address:  325 W State St., Boise, ID 83702
Phone:  208-334-2150

Idaho State Law Library
Address:  702 W. Idaho St., 4th Floor, Boise, ID 83702
Phone:  208-334-2117

Missing Person Clearinghouse
PO Box 700
Meridian, ID 83680-0700
Ph: 208.884.7137
Fx: 208.884.7193
Toll Free: 1.888.777.3922

Pardons and Parole, Idaho Commission of
PO Box 83720
Statehouse Mail
Boise, Idaho 83720-1807
(208) 334-2520

State Police (ISP)
Idaho State Police Headquarters
700 S. Stratford Dr., Meridian, ID 83642
Phone:  (208) 884-7000

Federal Courts

Court Records Electronic Public Access

District & Bankruptcy Court

US Ninth Circuit Courts

State Archives

Idaho Public Archives and Research Library
2205 East Old Penitentiary Road
Boise, ID 83712
(208) 334-2620