Classifying Drafts

Consideration 1: Is the draft a record?

In the definitions section, the Government Records Access and Management Act (GRAMA) states that:

’Record’ does not mean... a temporary draft or similar material prepared for the originator’s personal use or prepared by the originator for the personal use of an individual for whom the originator is working. UC 63G-2-103(22)(b)(ii)

The first requirement of a determination that a draft does not meet the definition of a record under the law is that it must be temporary. Some synonyms for temporary are short-term, interim, provisional, fleeting, passing, stopgap, and non-permanent.

The second requirement for determining that a draft is not a record is that it is created for a government employee’s personal use. This personal use is presumed to be work related. The draft is a provisional, interim, or stopgap rendition of information to be used in a work process by an individual. Some examples of temporary drafts that can be identified as “not records” include such things as field notes taken in preparation for completing a subsequent report. Notes or prompts a speaker or presenter uses during a speech or presentation could be a temporary draft, or it could be a temporary license or authorization issued as a place holder while a more permanent license or authorization is processed.

On a number of occasions governmental entities have argued the “non-record” status of temporary drafts before the State Records Committee. The Committee’s decisions in these arguments are helpful for identifying drafts that can be characterized as not records subject to GRAMA. The following table shows instances in which the State Records Committee made determinations about drafts that were claimed to be not records:

State Records Committee hearings: Drafts that are not records


Description of draft claimed not to be a record

Committee’s decision


Photographs of tattoos used to identify gang membership of prisoners when no gang membership is identified

Affirmed that these are “temporary drafts” and are not records


Hand written notes created during a performance review

Notes were shared with supervisors and maintained in a way that they could be reviewed; therefore they are records


List of businesses and individuals who were purported to be non-responsive to a mailing

List was an ad hoc list created from other records and not required to be provided


Hand-written personal notes

Affirmed that these are "temporary drafts" and are not records


Notes, drafts, similar material regarding an affidavit

Affirmed that these are "temporary drafts" and are not records


Internal documents, memos, files, email

Handwritten notes are records and were not “temporary drafts”


Draft documents maintained in the tax appraiser’s file; used by appraiser in analysis of subject property

Drafts maintained in a file are records and not “temporary drafts”


Copies of communications regarding a particular topic

Of numerous documents some were characterized as “temporary drafts” and therefore not records


Notes and scores of employment candidates in an interview

Notes were not used only for the originator’s personal use; therefore they are records

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Page Last Updated June 2, 2016 .