You can make a request simply by completing the request form, Freedom of Information Request (PDF, 173KB) or you can authorise someone else (for example, a solicitor) to make a request on your behalf. If you want someone to make a request on your behalf for your personal information, you must give them your written authorisation. This needs to be provided with your application.
A valid Freedom of Information application must:
- be in writing to Council or lodged electronically via FOI Online
- clearly describe the specific documents or group of documents you want access to
- it is recommended that you try to give a time period and describe the type of documents you want (such as reports, letters or permits) and not ‘all documents’ in a broad category. If your request is quite broad, you may receive and be charged for documents you don’t want access to.
- include the application fee which is a non-refundable, fixed cost or provide evidence that you qualify to have an application fee waived under the hardship provisions. There may be other costs incurred in granting access to the documents you have requested.
Once your request is received, Council’s FOI officer will review it to make sure that all the necessary information has been included and the documents you are requesting have been clearly identified. The officer will contact you if more information is needed.
Council may not be able to identify any relevant documents to release. If there are relevant documents, the FOI officer will decide to either:
- release all the documents you requested
- release part of the documents you requested
- release none of the documents you requested.
When your request has been processed, you will be sent a letter with the officer’s decision.
Under the Act, your request must be completed within 30 days from the date Council receives a valid request. Note: This time limit only applies if your request has all the details the officer needs to process it and the application fee has been paid or waived. The time limit can be extended in some circumstances, such as if third party consultation is required, or by agreement with you.
Part II Statement
Part II of the Freedom of Information Act ensures that individuals and organisations can effectively exercise their right to obtain access to government information which may affect them. To this end, they must be aware of what government does, how it acts and what information it holds.
Council releases a large amount of information through online and print publishing as well as person-to-person service provision. In order to comply with Part II of the Act, Council has developed Information Statements to show how it is making information readily available to the public. Making information easily accessible reduces the need for members of the public to submit requests under the Act.
Council's Part II Statement is available here, Freedom of information Part II Statement(PDF, 1MB)