Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Requests

Submitting a FOIA Request - Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)

The Virginia Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) (located in Section 2.2-3700 et seq. of the Code of Virginia) guarantees citizens of the Commonwealth and representatives of the media access to public records held by public bodies, public officials, and public employees.

To request records from the Town of Warrenton, please direct your request to the FOIA Records Center.
Stephen Clough
PO Box 341
Warrenton, VA 20188
Fax: (540) 349-2414
Phone: (540) 347-1101

Review of Your Request

After the Town receives your request for records, the Town has five business days to respond to you, either by:

  • Asking for more details about the request
  • Filling the request
  • Filling part of the request
  • Denying the request
  • Letting you know if all or part of your request is denied

The Town will state what parts of the Freedom of Information Act exempt that information from mandatory public release.  (Some common exemptions include personnel records, medical records, and information that is part of criminal investigations.)

Zoning Confirmation Requests

Zoning Confirmation requests can be utilized to receive copies of specific documents such as active/past building permits and site development plans. This is also a great way to get information about the property such as Zoning designations, Permitted and permissible uses, Active Building/Zoning Permits and previous permits, Zoning/Building/Fire code violations, Active enforcement cases, Approved Special Use Permits, Approved Site Development Plans, and more! Reach out to Community Development staff for more information on Zoning Confirmation requests!


Town policy on charges for accessing or searching for requested records as required by Virginia Code § 2.2-3704.1.  The town does not have a fixed charge for accessing or searching for requested records. Charges for accessing or searching for requested records are based on the hourly rate of the person searching for the records in question. To keep costs down, the town attempts to use the lowest-paid staff members capable of retrieving the requested records in responding to a request. However, in situations where a staff member is required to search through his or her email and files, the staff member will search for the requested records and the search charge will be based on that employee's hourly rate. 

The Town is permitted to charge only for the actual costs of responding to your request. If the estimated costs exceed $200, you may be required to pay a deposit (not to exceed the amount of the estimate) before processing your request. Additionally, if you owe the Town money from a previous request that has remained unpaid for more than 30 days, the Town will require you to pay the past-due bill before processing any subsequent records requests. No public body shall impose any extraneous, intermediary, or surplus fees or expenses to recoup the general costs associated with creating or maintaining public records or transacting the general business of the public body.   

Any duplicating fee charged by a public body shall not exceed the actual cost of duplication.  All charges for the supplying of requested records shall be estimated in advance at the request of the citizen as outlined in subsection F of Section § 2.2-3704 of the Code of Virginia.   

A schedule of the Town's costs per page and material costs is outlined below

Black and White Copy - $0.11 per page
Color Copy - $0.20 per page
Large Plats - $5 per page
DVD - $1.50 per disc
USB Storage - $6 per 32GB. 

Copying costs shall only be assessed on public records that are printed, not on public records that are provided electronically to requesters. The Town may charge for the actual cost of the medium by which the information is provided (e.g., CD, DVD, flash drive, etc.).

 Note that FOIA does not require governments to create records that do not currently exist.