Public Records & Disclosures

Under Washington State's Public Records Act (RCW 42.56) and City of Seattle ordinance, you can request disclosure of public records about the solid waste, sewer, drainage, or water utilities (for the electric utility, see City Light). Public records are any writing prepared, owned, used, or retained by Seattle Public Utilities (SPU), regardless of physical form, that reflect the conduct or performance of the department.

A number of public records are available online.

How to Request Public Records

Use the online Public Records Request Center to make the request. You can create a log-on, enter request details, track the request, communicate with the disclosure officer, pay for copies, and download digital files.

We will need the following information from you:

  • Your contact information
  • Details of the records, such as document type, office, author, or subject
  • Dates or date range of the records

How We Respond to the Request

We will respond to your request within five business days with any of the following:

  • Acknowledge your request.
  • Estimate the time when records will be available.
  • Make records available for copying or review.
  • Ask for clarity when requests are unclear or broad.
  • Invoice you for the cost.
  • Deny your request with an explanation.

Records not for disclosure

We disclose public records unless state law says they should not be released (exempted) for reasons of privacy, confidentiality, or vital government interests. We provide you with the documents' general descriptions, how many we are denying, and the reasons for nondisclosure. You may also see exempted records in redacted form.

Nondisclosure of customer information

Under RCW 42.56.330(2), customer contact information stored in SPU’s billing system—addresses, phone numbers and email addresses—cannot be disclosed. We redact or remove such information from data or documents, such as those on water consumption or shutoffs, before they are made available.  

Fees and payments

Our fee schedule shows the material and delivery costs. You will receive an invoice and have the option to pay securely online. There is no charge to inspect public records at our offices.

How We Send the Records

You will be able to download digital files from Public Records Request Center when they are ready and after paying the cost. You can also receive paper documents or computer discs by U.S. mail. For large volumes of documents, especially on paper, we can set up an appointment with you to inspect them at our office.

More Information


Public Utilities

Andrew Lee, General Manager and CEO
Address: 700 5th Avenue, Suite 4900, Seattle, WA, 98104
Mailing Address: PO Box 34018, Seattle, WA, 98124-5177
Phone: (206) 684-3000

Newsletter Updates


Sign up for the latest updates from Public Utilities

Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) is comprised of three major direct-service providing utilities: the Water Utility, the Drainage and Wastewater Utility, and the Solid Waste Utility.