Freedom of Information
Rights To Access Documents
The Western Australian Freedom of Information Act 1992 (FOI Act 1992) gives applicants the right to apply for access to documents held by the Shire of Katanning. An applicant’s right to seek access cannot be affected by their reason for wishing to obtain access, and there is no need to demonstrate a reason.
The Shire is required:
- to assist in making an application
- to assist in obtaining access to documents at a reasonable cost and,
- to ensure that personal information captured in documents is accurate, complete, up-to-date and not misleading.
While the Act provides general right of access to documents, it also recognises some documents require a level of protection, specifically those documents that meet the exemption criteria in Schedule 1 of the FOI Act 1992, which includes (but is not limited to):
- Personal information that identifies a third party
- Information concerning trade secrets
- Information of commercial value
Making An Application
- Apply in writing to the Freedom of Information (FOI) Co-ordinator. No special form is required.
- Identify or describe the documents concerned, or if you apply for amendment of personal information about yourself you must provide details to show how or why the agency's records are inaccurate, incomplete, out of date or misleading; If you ask for "everything" on a particular subject, the FOI Co-ordinator may help you narrow the scope of your application to ensure that the work involved is reasonable. Othewise an agency may refuse to deal with your application.
- Give an address in Australia where notices can be sent. If possible, include your telephone number/fax number/email address as this will help the FOI Co-ordinator to contact you if necessary, to assist in your application being dealt with efficiently.
- Lodge your written application with the Shire with any applicable fee payable.
Download a copy of the Shire of Katanning's Freedom of Information Statement (includes application form).
Once the Shire has received a valid application, it is required to provide a Notice of Decision within 45 calendar days. The Shire aims to respond as soon as practicable to any application and will negotiate with the applicant on an extension to the 45 day limit should the application be unusually large or require consultation with a significant number of third parties.
Should the applicant not be satisfied with the decision provided in the Notice of Decision, they have 30 days in which to lodge an Internal Review application. Once the Internal Review application has been received, the Shire has 15 days in which to respond.
Should the applicant still not be satisfied with the outcome of the Internal Review, there is a 60 day period in which to lodge an External Review application with the Freedom of Information Commissioner. The Commissioner will then undertake the review and forward a response within 30 days.
Listed below is a scale of fees and charges set under the FOI Regulations. Apart from the application fee for non-personal information, all charges are discretionary and are set by the Council. The charges are as follows:
|Application fee for personal information (about the applicant)
|Application Fee for non personal information
Additional administrative fees and charges may apply.
|Advance deposit which may be required by an agency under section 18 (1) of the Act, expressed as a percentage of the estimated charges which will be payable in excess of the application fee
|Further advance deposit which may be required by an agency under section 18 (4) of the Act, expressed as a percentage of the estimated charges which will be payable in excess of the application fee
For financially disadvantaged applicants or those issued with prescribed pensioner concession cards, the charge payable maybe reduced by 25%