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Appendix 5: Access to government information

Report under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009

Review of Proactive Release Program

Under section 7 of the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA Act), agencies must review their programs to identify the kinds of information that can be made publicly available. This review must be undertaken at least once every 12 months.

We continued to provide information on its website, including detailed reports on its infrastructure and maintenance projects and statistics. The website also continues to provide a range of publications free of charge to assist customers wishing to use our services.

Number of access applications received - Clause 7(b)

During the reporting period, our agency actioned 1,738 access applications.

Number of refused applications for Schedule 1 information - Clause 7(c)

During the reporting period, we refused 24 access applications because the information requested was information referred to in Schedule 1 to the GIPA Act. Of those applications, four were refused in full and 20 were refused in part.

Statistical information about access applications - Schedule 2

Table 29: Invalid GIPA Act applications
Reason for invalidity Number of applications Percentage of total
Application does not comply with formal requirements (section 41 of the Act) 57746 100%
Application is for excluded information of the agency (section 43 of the Act) 0 0%
Application contravenes restraint order (section 110 of the Act) 0 0%
Total number of invalid applications received 577 100%
Invalid applications that subsequently became valid applications 540 94%
Table 30A: GIPA Act applications by type of applicant and outcome47
Access granted in full Access granted in part Access refused in full Information not held Information already available Refuse to deal with application Refuse to confirm/deny whether information is held Application withdrawn Total % of total
Media 3 3 2 1 0 0 0 1 10 1
Members of Parliament 9 9 3 4 1 1 0 3 30 2
Private sector business 478 369 138 42 4 0 0 10 1,041 60
Not for profit organisations or community groups 7 2 57 16 0 0 0 1 83 5
Members of the public (by legal representative) 72 37 30 33 1 4 0 2 179 10
Members of the public (other) 213 63 49 65 4 4 1 5 404 23
Total 782 483 279 161 10 9 1 22 1,747
% of total 45 28 16 9 1 1 0 1
Table 30B: GIPA Act applications by type of application and outcome
Access granted in full Access granted in part Access refused in full Information not held Information already available Refuse to deal with application Refuse to confirm/deny whether information is held Application withdrawn Total % of total
Personal information applications48 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0%
Access applications (other than personal information applications) 782 483 279 161 10 9 1 22 1,747 100%
Access applications that are partly personal information applications and partly other 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0%
Total 782 483 279 161 10 9 1 22 1,747
% of total 45 28 16 9 1 1 0 1
Table 31: Conclusive presumption of overriding public interest against disclosure: matters listed in Schedule 1 of the GIPA Act
Number of times consideration used51 % of total
Overriding secrecy laws 0 0
Cabinet information 16 57
Executive Council information 0 0
Contempt 1 4
Legal professional privilege 11 39
Excluded information 0 0
Documents affecting law enforcement and public safety 0 0
Transport safety 0 0
Adoption 0 0
Care and protection of children 0 0
Ministerial Code of Conduct 0 0
Aboriginal and environmental heritage 0 0
Total 28
Table 32: Other public interest considerations against disclosure: matters listed in table to section 14 of the GIPA Act
Number of times consideration used49 % of total
Responsible and effective government 12 1
Law enforcement and security 2 0
Individual rights, judicial processes and natural justice 718 75
Business interests of agencies and other persons 24 3
Environment, culture, economy and general matters 0 0
Secrecy provisions 204 21
Exempt documents under interstate Freedom of Information legislation 0 0
Table 33: Timeliness of GIPA Act decisions50
Number of applications % of total
Decided within the statutory timeframe (20 days plus any extensions) 1,727 99
Decided after 35 days (by agreement with applicant) 11 1
Not decided within time (deemed refusal) 0 0
Total 1,738 100%
Table 34: Number of applications reviewed under Part 5 of the GIPA Act by type of review and outcome
Decision varied Decision upheld Total % of total
Internal review 6 4 10 23
Review by Information Commissioner51 12 4 16 37
Internal review following recommendation under section 93 of the Act 0 12 12 28
Review by the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal 1 4 5 12
Total 19 24 43 -
Percentage of total 44% 56% - -
Table 35: Applications for review under Part 5 of the GIPA Act by type of applicant
Number of applications for review % of total
Applications by access applicants 38 88
Applications by persons to whom information the subject of access application relates (see section 54 of the Act) 5 12
Total 43
Table 36: GIPA Act applications transferred to other agencies
Number of applications transferred % of total
Agency-initiated transfers 5 100
Applicant-initiated transfers 0 0
Total 5

Footnotes:

  1. Transport for NSW Resource and Compliance Unit makes decisions on validity. Due to the introduction of a credit card payment facility, applications have to be initially entered as invalid and then changed to valid after the credit card payment is approved. Of the 577 invalid applications, 540 were credit card related. As such, only 37 applications received were invalid.
  2. As more than one decision can be made for a particular access application, each decision is recorded. This means that from 1,738 access applications actioned, that 1,747 decisions were determined.
  3. A personal information application is an application by an individual under the GIPA Act to access personal information (as defined in Clause 4 of Schedule 4 to the Act).
  4. When more than one public interest consideration applies to a particular access application, each consideration is recorded.
  5. All applications actioned were dealt with on time.
  6. The Information Commissioner does not have the authority to vary decisions, but can make recommendations to the original decision-maker. The data provided indicates the Information Commissioner has made a recommendation to vary or uphold the original decision.

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