The Freedom of Information Act 2000 provides public access to information held by public authorities.
It does this in two ways:
- public authorities are obliged to publish certain information about their activities; and
- members of the public are entitled to request information from public authorities.
The Act covers any recorded information that is held by local authorities. Recorded information includes printed documents, computer files, letters, emails, photographs, and sound or video recordings.
In some cases, there will be a good reason why some information should not be made public. A request can be refused under the following circumstances:
- It would cost too much or take too much staff time to deal with the request.
- The request is vexatious.
- The request repeats a previous request from the same person.
The Act does not give people access to their own personal data (information about themselves) such as their health records or credit reference file. If a member of the public wants to see information that a public authority holds about them, they should make a subject access request under the Data Protection Act 1998.
Hemswell Cliff Parish Councils Freedom of Information documents can be accessed below: