.12 Review of the Denial.

A. If a written request is denied by the custodian for a reason other than that the record is temporarily unavailable, the applicant may, within 30 days after receipt of the notice of the denial, request an administrative hearing.

B. If the applicant requests a hearing, the hearing shall be conducted by a hearing officer designated by the Secretary, and the hearing shall be governed by State Government Article, Title 10, Subtitle 2, Annotated Code of Maryland. After the hearing, the hearing officer shall prepare a recommended decision for the Secretary. The Secretary shall issue a final decision of the Department.

C. If the hearing results in a total or partial denial of the written request, the applicant may file an appropriate action in the circuit court under §10-623 of the Act.

D. If the applicant chooses not to request a hearing under §A, of this regulation, the applicant may file an action for judicial enforcement under §10-623 of the Act without exhausting that administrative remedy.