Maine Revised Statutes

§7070. Personnel records

Every appointment, transfer, promotion, demotion, dismissal, vacancy, change of salary rate, leave of absence, absence from duty and other temporary or permanent change in status of employees in both the classified service and the unclassified service of the Executive and Legislative Departments shall be reported to the director at such time, in such form and together with such supportive or pertinent information as he shall by rule prescribe. [1985, c. 785, Pt. B, §38 (NEW).]

The director shall maintain a perpetual roster of all officers and employees in the classified and unclassified services, showing for each person such data that the director considers pertinent. [2007, c. 466, Pt. A, §21 (AMD).]

Records of the Bureau of Human Resources shall be public records and open to inspection of the public during regular office hours at reasonable times and in accordance with the procedure as the director may provide. [1985, c. 785, Pt. B, §38 (NEW).]

The following records shall be confidential and not open to public inspection, and shall not be "public records," as defined in Title 1, section 402, subsection 3: [1985, c. 785, Pt. B, §38 (NEW).]

1. Papers relating to applications, examinations or evaluations of applicants.  Except as provided in this subsection, applications, resumes, letters and notes of reference, working papers, research materials, records, examinations and any other documents or records and the information they contain, solicited or prepared either by the applicant or the State for use in the examination or evaluation of applicants for positions as state employees.
A. Notwithstanding any confidentiality provision other than this subsection, applications, resumes and letters and notes of reference, other than those letters and notes of reference expressly submitted in confidence, pertaining to the applicant hired are public records after the applicant is hired, except that personal contact information is not a public record as provided in Title 1, section 402, subsection 3, paragraph O. [2007, c. 597, §5 (AMD).]
B. Telephone numbers are not public records if they are designated as "unlisted" or "unpublished" in an application, resume or letter or note of reference. [1989, c. 402, §1 (NEW).]
C. This subsection does not preclude union representatives from access to personnel records, consistent with subsection 4, which may be necessary for the bargaining agent to carry out its collective bargaining responsibilities. Any records available to union representatives which are otherwise covered by this subsection shall remain confidential and are not open to public inspection; [1989, c. 402, §1 (NEW).]
[ 2007, c. 597, §5 (AMD) .]
2. Personal information.  Records containing the following, except they may be examined by the employee to whom they relate when the examination is permitted or required by law:
A. Medical information of any kind, including information pertaining to diagnosis or treatment of mental or emotional disorders; [1985, c. 785, Pt. B, §38 (NEW).]
B. Performance evaluations and personal references submitted in confidence; [1985, c. 785, Pt. B, §38 (NEW).]
C. Information pertaining to the credit worthiness of a named employee; [1985, c. 785, Pt. B, §38 (NEW).]
D. Information pertaining to the personal history, general character or conduct of members of the employee's immediate family; [1997, c. 124, §2 (AMD).]
D-1. Personal information pertaining to the employee's race, color, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, physical disability, mental disability and marital status; social security number; personal contact information as provided in Title 1, section 402, subsection 3, paragraph O; and personal employment choices pertaining to elected payroll deductions, deferred compensation, savings plans, pension plans, health insurance and life insurance. When there is a work requirement for public access to personal information under this paragraph that is not otherwise protected by law, that information may be made public. The Director of the Bureau of Human Resources, upon the request of the employing agency, shall make the determination that the release of certain personal information not otherwise protected by law is allowed; and [2007, c. 597, §6 (AMD).]
E. Except as provided in section 7070-A, complaints, charges or accusations of misconduct, replies to those complaints, charges or accusations and any other information or materials that may result in disciplinary action. If disciplinary action is taken, the final written decision relating to that action is no longer confidential after the decision is completed if it imposes or upholds discipline. If an arbitrator completely overturns or removes disciplinary action from an employee personnel file, the final written decision is public except that the employee's name must be deleted from the final written decision and kept confidential. If the employee whose name was deleted from the final written decision discloses that the employee is the person who is the subject of the final written decision, the entire final written report, with regard to that employee, is public.
For purposes of this paragraph, "final written decision" means:
(1) The final written administrative decision that is not appealed pursuant to a grievance arbitration procedure; or
(2) If the final written administrative decision is appealed to arbitration, the final written decision of a neutral arbitrator.
A final written administrative decision that is appealed to arbitration is no longer confidential 120 days after a written request for the decision is made to the employer if the final written decision of the neutral arbitrator is not issued and released before the expiration of the 120 days; [1997, c. 770, §1 (AMD).]
This subsection does not preclude union representatives from having access to personnel records, consistent with subsection 4, that may be necessary for the bargaining agent to carry out its collective bargaining responsibilities. Any records available to union representatives that are otherwise covered by this subsection remain confidential and are not open for public inspection;
[ 2007, c. 597, §6 (AMD) .]
3. Other information.  Other information to which access by the general public is prohibited by law.
[ 1985, c. 785, Pt. B, §38 (NEW) .]
4. Disclosure of certain information for grievance and other proceedings.  The Director of Human Resources may release specific information designated confidential by this section to be used in negotiations, mediation, fact-finding, arbitration, grievance proceedings and other proceedings in which the State is a party. For the purpose of this subsection, "other proceedings" means unemployment compensation proceedings, workers' compensation proceedings, human rights proceedings and labor relations proceedings.
Confidential information provided under this subsection shall be governed by the following.
A. The information to be released shall be information only as necessary and directly related to the proceeding as determined by the Director of Human Resources. [1987, c. 673, §1 (NEW).]
B. [2007, c. 240, Pt. HH, §12 (RP).]
C. The proceeding for which the confidential information is provided shall be private and not open to the public; or, if the proceeding is open to the public, the confidential information shall not be disclosed except exclusively in the presence of the fact finder, the parties and counsel of record, and the employee who is the subject of the proceeding and provisions are made to ensure that there is no public access to the confidential information. [1987, c. 673, §1 (NEW).]
The State may use this confidential information in proceedings and provide copies to the employee organization that is a party to the proceedings, provided the information is directly related to those proceedings as defined by the applicable collective bargaining agreement. Confidential personnel records in the possession of the Bureau of Human Resources may not be open to public inspection and may not be "public records," as defined in Title 1, section 402, subsection 3.
[ 2007, c. 240, Pt. HH, §12 (AMD) .]
5. Constitutional obligations of a prosecutor.   Notwithstanding this section or any other provision of law, this section does not preclude the disclosure of confidential personnel records and the information contained in those records to the Attorney General, a deputy attorney general, an assistant attorney general, a district attorney, a deputy district attorney, an assistant district attorney or the equivalent departments or offices in a federal jurisdiction that are related to the determination of and compliance with the constitutional obligations of the State or the United States to provide discovery to a defendant in a criminal matter. A person or entity participating in good faith disclosure under this subsection or participating in a related proceeding is immune from criminal and civil liability for the act of disclosure or for participating in the proceeding.
[ 2013, c. 201, §1 (NEW) .]
SECTION HISTORY
1985, c. 785, §B38 (NEW). 1987, c. 673, §1 (AMD). 1989, c. 402, §1 (AMD). 1991, c. 229, §1 (AMD). 1991, c. 729, §1 (AMD). 1997, c. 124, §2 (AMD). 1997, c. 770, §1 (AMD). 2007, c. 240, Pt. HH, §12 (AMD). 2007, c. 466, Pt. A, §21 (AMD). 2007, c. 597, §§5, 6 (AMD). 2013, c. 201, §1 (AMD).