Right to Information and Information Privacy request for documents
The Right to Information Act 2009 (RTI Act) and Information Privacy Act 2009 (IP Act) came into effect on 1 July 2009.
Both Acts give you the right to apply for access to documents held by Government agencies, which includes Council.
How do I apply?
The Queensland Government has an approved application form which must be used to make an application for documents under the RTI Act or IP Act.
Visit the Queensland Government – Right to Information and Information Privacy website to download the application form.
Your application may be lodged:
- in person at one of our customer service centres
- by email to firstname.lastname@example.org
- by post to Logan City Council, PO Box 3226, Logan Central QLD 4114
Please do not include credit card details on the application form.
You can call us to arrange a credit card payment if this if your preferred method.
What do I need to provide?
Before you are given access to personal information, you will need to provide proof of your identity either with your application or within 10 business days of making an application.
You can provide a certified copy of the document, or you can arrange a time to come in and have your proof of identity sighted by an officer.
Acceptable documents include:
- current driver’s licence
- identifying page of current passport
- birth certificate
- copy of a prisoner's identity card certified by the corrective services officer
- a statutory declaration of an individual who has known the applicant for at least one year.
A certified copy is a true and correct copy of the original document, which has been signed by a lawyer, notary public, a Commissioner for Declarations or a Justice of the Peace.
They must sight the original document and be able to say that the certified copy is a true and correct copy of the original. A digital copy or photocopy of the certified copy cannot be accepted. The certified copy itself must be provided.
What documents can I request?
You can ask for any documents that are held or controlled by Logan City Council.
Under both Acts a “document” can be a paper file, microfiche, printout, computer record and file, visual material (e.g. x-rays, films, photograph, audio and audio-visual material including CD's and DVDs, CCTV footage).
Where we cannot grant you access to a document, we will explain why in our decision letter to you.
Where documents are available through other means (e.g. through public records, a disclosure log or a Council search (whether or not a fee is payable)), these documents will not be available through a Right to Information ot Information Privacy application.
We are required to publish a disclosure log on our website that details documents already made available under the RTI Act.
Before lodging your application, please see our disclosure logs to check if the documents you want are already available upon request.
If you would like a copy of the released documents, please:
- email your request to email@example.com, or
- mail your request to our Right to Information Officer.
Do I have to give a reason for applying?
Providing a reason for accessing Council held documents is not required, but can be beneficial if we are unsure whether to grant access on “public interest” grounds.
Do I have to pay for this?
An application fee of $52.60 is payable for applications requesting access to non-personal information or a combination of personal and non-personal information.
The application fee is a requirement under section 24(4) of the Right to Information Act 2009 and cannot be waived.
The application fee can be paid by credit card, cheque, cash or money order and must accompany your application.
Your application cannot be processed without payment of the application fees.
There is no application fee for requesting access to personal information only under the IP Act.
If your application is considered to involve non-personal information (RTI application) and the processing or inspection time is less than five (5) hours, no charge is payable.
If the time taken exceeds five (5) hours a charge of $8.15 per fifteen (15) minutes (or part thereof) applies to every hour.
For example, if processing your RTI application takes six (6) hours, there is no 'free' five (5) hour period and the total charge will be based upon the total six (6) hours.
Processing charges must be paid before access to the documents is allowed.
There is no charge for the processing of documents that contain your personal information only (IP Application and any applicable documents under an RTI application).
The access charges for a document are the actual cost incurred by Council, these include:
- engaging another entity to search for and retrieve the document
- transcribing audio recordings (of words), shorthand writing or codified words
- creating a written document using equipment usually available to the Council for retrieving or collating stored information (for example printing a report from a database), or
- printing copies of documents:
- there will be a charge of 25 cents per A4 page for each black and white copy
- additional charges for copies of other documents (e.g. x-rays, colour copies, A3) will be payable.
There is no access charge for providing access to a document in electronic form, like an email or on a disc.
Applying for a Waiver of the Processing and Access Charges
You can apply in writing for a waiver of the processing and access charges.
For a waiver of the processing and access fees to apply, you will need to establish that you satisfy the grounds for financial hardship under s66 of the RTI Act and can produce a valid concession card.
It is important to note that even if you are able to show financial hardship, the waiver will only apply to the processing and access charges and you will still have to pay the application fee.
How can I pay?
Payment of the relevant charges can be made by credit card, cheque, cash or money order.
You may choose to pay for these charges either by telephone, by post or in person at one of our customer service centres.
Logan City Council has registered for GST and has been issued with an Australian Business Number (ABN) 21 627 796 435
Can I ask for another person's personal documents?
Usually you cannot access another person's document unless that person has authorised in writing that you can access them.
Complainant details (e.g. name, address and telephone number) are generally not available through an RTI or IP application. This is because complainant or third party details (name, address and telephone number) are the personal information of the complainant.
If you request complainant or third party details as part of an RTI application, the complainant or third party must be consulted by Council particularly if the release of the information is likely to be of concern to them.
Where complainant or third party details are requested in an RTI application, they will only be released if either the consent of the complainant or third party has been obtained, or if it is considered to be in the public interest for their details to be released to you.
Authority to act as an agent
Where an application is in relation to the personal information of a third person or client, both the RTI Act and IP Act require a letter of authority signed by the third person or client authorising the agent to act as an "agent" on their behalf.
This letter will also need to be accompanied by proof of identity of the third party or client as well as proof of identity of the agent (refer to 'What do I need to provide’ section for acceptable identity documents)
The RTI Act Section 24(3) requires the agent to provide these documents either at the time of application or within 10 business days after making an application.
Processing the application.
Once a valid RTI or IP application is received, we have 25 business days to process the application and provide a decision.
That legislative period may be extended in certain situations. For example, if:
- you have requested a large number of documents, or
- we have to consult third parties.
During the course of your application the Council RTI case officer may need to contact you to clarify what you are after and to keep you aware of progress.
For this reason it is very helpful if you can supply a phone number or email address for easy contact.
What if I am unhappy with the outcome?
If you are not satisfied with a decision that Council has made about your RTI or IP application, you have the option of asking for an Internal Review.
This is where a more senior officer will review the original decision made about your request.
Alternatively, you have the right to ask for an External Review of the decision by the Queensland Information Commissioner.
Full review rights information will be given to you in any decision letter you receive from us.
For more information
For details and information on how to make an RTI / IP application or for further information, please contact our Integrity and Information program.
To download a copy of the Acts from the Legislation Queensland website please visit:
Copies of the Acts are also available through public libraries, community centres and government agencies.
Enquiry Service - Office of the Information Commissioner Queensland
For general enquiries on the operation and application of Queensland’s Right to Information and Information Privacy legislation, please visit the Information Commissioner Queensland website.
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