Public Records

 Washington law requires state and local agencies to make most records available to the public. The law, the Washington State Public Records Act (PRA) RCW 42.56, supports the public’s right to be informed about what their government is doing.

What is the PRA?

The rules governing access to public records are found primarily in the Washington State Public Records Act (Chapter 42.56 RCW). City rules and procedures are found in Chapter 2.40 of the Newcastle Municipal Code and the city’s records disclosure policy.

The Act lists certain public records that do not have to be disclosed. The Act also requires that the public records requested are “identifiable.” Your public records disclosure request must include a reasonable description that would allow a City of Newcastle employee to locate the records.

A general question is not a public disclosure request. Please direct questions to the appropriate department or the City Clerk, who will forward on the question to the correct department.

Accessing Records

One of the many ways we ensure city government remains open and accessible is by providing access to city databases on our website and document center. Using the search function, you will find a wealth of information including:


Often, city staff can easily provide information or frequently requested records without the need to submit a formal request. Normal business hours for city hall are 8 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday (excluding legal holidays). The city’s main phone number is 425-649-4444.

It is important to note that not all government records are held by the City of Newcastle. Police records can be obtained from the King County Sheriff's Office. Fire department records are available from the City of Bellevue Fire Department. Building permits predating the city's 1994 incorporation may be available from King County. School records are held by the School Districts of Bellevue, Renton, or Issaquah.

 Complete an online request on the city’s public records portal to access additional public records:

Public Records Request

Requests can be submitted in person or by mail if needed. To submit a request this way, a records request form is provided. The physical and mailing address for city hall is 12835 Newcastle Way, Suite 200, Newcastle, WA 98056.


The City Manager designated the City Clerk/ HR Director as the city’s Public Records Officer pursuant to the Washington State Public Records Act (PRA) Chapter 42.56 RCW.

The public records officer oversees compliance with the PRA; however, other city staff members may assist with processing a request. Within five business days of receiving a records request, the records officer will respond by:

  • Providing access to or copies of the record;
  • Denying the request due to no responsive records to the request;
  • Providing a reasonable time estimate to complete the request;
  • Providing an edited record with an explanation of the legal basis for removing some of the content; or
  • Denying the request in part or in full based on a legal exemption.


Washington State Office of the Attorney General

Municipal Research and Services Center

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