Freedom of Information Requests
The Freedom of Information Act is intended to promote a culture of openness and accountability amongst public authorities. Before submitting a Freedom of Information Request check our website to see if the information you need is already published.
If the information you have asked for is not already published we must usually tell you whether or not we hold the information elsewhere. To make a request please email email@example.com
What information will be available and how long will it take?
The Freedom of Information Act covers all recorded information we hold, regardless of format, such as documents, e-mails and audio information.
We must usually respond to your request for information within 20 working days of receiving it. If possible we will provide it sooner. If we need to clarify your request we will contact you for more details.
Can the council refuse to deal with my request?
Most requests for information will be responded to in full, however, we do have the right to refuse any vexatious or repeated requests. This might include repeated requests from the same person or group for the same information or requests which are intended to disrupt the council’s work. The Freedom of Information Act also has a number of exemptions which, if appropriate, the council may use to refuse requests for certain information (for example, to protect a person’s privacy or a third party’s right to confidentiality). If we refuse your request you will be told why.
If you are requesting information and the cost of finding, retrieving and extracting the information is estimated to exceed £450 (18 hours work at £25 per hour) the council is entitled to refuse the request.
Will I have to pay?
We want to make as much information available free of charge as possible. However, the council can make a reasonable charge for costs such as photo-copying, printing and postage. You will be informed as early as possible if a charge is payable. Any charges must be paid before the information is sent. You will have 90 days to pay the fees after which the request will be closed. Charges will be made in accordance with the Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004.