Data fees

You have the right to look at any public data the City keeps at no charge. However, the City may charge for copies. You have the right to look at data before deciding to request copies.

Just looking at data is always free

According to the Minnesota Data Practices Act, the City may not charge a fee for merely inspecting data, but you may be required to pay for copies or electronic transmission of data.

We only charge for requests that exceed $30.00

When the City charges a fee for providing data, it may only include the actual cost to produce the material. Actual cost is calculated according to rates established in this policy.

Data charges

We occasionally review these charges and adjust as needed.

Type of service


Hourly Rate (charged in ¼ hour increments)


911 Call Transcript


Physical Copies

$0.25/page up to 100 pages



Printing Cost - B/W


Printing Costs - Color


Flash Drive (4-8GB)


Flash Drive (16-32GB)


Certification Service


3.5”x5” Photo Prints

$10.00 base plus $0.25/photo

8”x12” Photo Prints

$10.00 base plus $0.25/photo

Approved by Council Nov. 9, 2000, Revised Jan. 22, 2018

About data charges

To determine the fees, the City follows these principles:

  • All reasonable effort must be made to determine the actual costs of searching for, retrieving, copying and, where applicable, certifying the data. The City should not charge any fee that is more than the demonstrated cost of allowable expenses.
  • When possible, City staff will use the Document Solutions Center for efficient and cost-effective copying of documents.

Don’t make multiple smaller requests to avoid fees

The City may consider multiple requests by an individual or organization within 60 days as a single request.

Data about you

When you request data about yourself, the City may only charge for the actual cost of an employee to make paper copies or print copies of electronically stored data. The City will not charge you for time spent searching for and retrieving your data.

Media or other government requests

Requests made by the media or other government agencies will generally not be assessed a fee, unless the request requires the data be reformatted in a manner other than the way the City maintains it.

Data charges may include:

  • Cost of media (Paper, CD ROMS, DVDs, Flash Drives, etc.)
  • Mailing costs
  • Employee time to prepare media (see standard hourly rate)
  • Costs of reproduction that cannot be done by the entity, such as photographs, oversized materials, etc.
  • Employee time to search for and retrieve the data (this charge does not apply if you are the subject of the data.)

Data charges may not include:

  • Employee time to redact or separate public from not public data
  • Operating expenses of office equipment
  • Costs not related to preparing media, such as generating invoices or cover sheets
  • Sales tax
  • Accounting functions
  • Costs related to the inspection of data

Laws about data charges

The following laws govern what the City may charge: