Public Records FAQ 2

Are municipal employee disciplinary or personnel files open to the public under the public records law?

Yes, in some cases. Public employee disciplinary or personnel records are not exempt from disclosure under the public records law. Instead, record custodians must, on a case-by-case basis, engage in a balancing test, weighing the public policies favoring disclosure, including the presumption of openness described in Wis. Stat. sec. 19.31 against any public policies favoring keeping such records closed, including the public policies established by Wis. Stat. secs. 19.85(1)(b), (c) and (f) and other statutes, against releasing public employee disciplinary or personnel records.