Kansas Prohibited Books and Periodicals

Alec Shea filed this request with the Department of Corrections of Kansas.


From: Alec Shea

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Kansas Open Records Act (K.S.A. 45-215), I hereby request the following records:

All lists of books and periodicals that are prohibited in Kansas prisons

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 3 business days, as the statute requires.


Alec Shea

From: KDOC_Public

August 7, 2017

Mr. Shea,

I am writing to advise you that the Kansas Department of Corrections (KDOC) received your e-mailed request on August 7, 2017, for the list of books and periodicals that are prohibited in Kansas prisons.

In accordance with K.S.A. 45-218 (d), we have begun the process of determining if we possess any public records meeting the terms of your request and how best to proceed. Soon we will provide you with one or more of the following:

Copies of the requested public records.

A statement concerning our inability to locate any public records meeting the terms of your request.

A request for clarification concerning the types of records or information you are seeking.

Record requests that can be provided with less than one hour of staff time will not be billed for labor. If we determine that our office possesses the public records you request, but are voluminous, difficult to locate, and/or contain information that may include open and closed information, we will provide you with a written estimate of the fees that we will require be pre-paid in order to pay for the actual costs associated with (a) locating and/or retrieving the public records from storage, (b) staff time spent in assisting with making copies of the records, including staff time spent examining the records for possible closure and/or redaction, and (c) copying and mailing the requested public records. In addition to billing for labor that exceed one hour of staff time, the following rates shall apply:

Copies, 25 cents per page; mailing, 50 cents for the first five pages, 25 cents for additional five-page increments; fax, 65 cents per 10 pages

Staff time will be charged at the rate of pay for each person whose time is used in order to assist and/or respond to a specific request. This may include the time spent to access records maintained on computer facilities, review records to determine whether closure exceptions apply and /or to redact open from closed information. For the purpose of transparency, our rates are as follows: general staff time will be charged at $20 per hour, and information technology (IT) services and Legal staff services will be charged at $38 per hour.

Additional fees may be assessed if any other costs are incurred by KDOC in connection with complying with a record request. KDOC will provide an estimate of the fees which shall be paid prior to the department gathering the records. In order to ensure payment, the final cost of providing access to or furnishing copies must be paid before the records are provided. If the final cost is less than the estimate, the requestor will be reimbursed for the difference.

If we determine that we do possess the records, but that the records are subject to closure by law, we will provide you with that information with a written citation to the laws allowing or requiring that type of public record to be closed.

We will respond as soon as possible to your Kansas Open Records Act Request. Please feel free to contact me with any questions.

Cheryl Cadue
Publications Editor, Communications Division
Kansas Department of Corrections

From: Todd Fertig [KDOC]

August 22, 2017

Alec Shea

Mr. Shea,

I am writing on behalf of the Kansas Department of Corrections (KDOC) regarding your request on Aug. 2, 2017, for a copy of the list of books and periodicals that are prohibited in Kansas prisons.

Please see attached a document entitled "censor decisions" which was current as of Aug. 21, 2017.

Just to be certain you know, the document of "censor decisions" only lists publications that have already had a ruling. Any new item received at a facility will not be contained on this list. While it might be helpful to review decisions made regarding other publications, it won't list an item that has never been subject to a ruling.


Todd Fertig

Director of Communications

Kansas Department of Corrections



From: Alec Shea


Thanks so much for your help with this request! I really appreciate it.

Alec Shea