Proactive Release

Beyond mandatory release, agencies are encouraged (and authorised) to release as much government information as possible.

Under section 7(3) of the GIPA Act, Council is required to review its proactive release program at least every 12 months, to identify any information we hold that should in the public interest be made publicly available.

You can ask Council what information they will make available to the public, in addition to the information contained on their website. Council will release as much government information as possible, in an appropriate way and free of charge (or at the lowest reasonable cost) providing there is no overriding interest against disclosure. 

Informal Request

Agencies are encouraged to informally release information, by excusing the need for a formal application (and fee) to be submitted.

The informal release provisions under section 8 of the GIPA Act provides Council with the authority to release information without the need for a formal access application.

Information can be informally requested from Council by contacting the Right to Information Officer.

Please note the GIPA Act provides no statutory timeframe by which informal requests must be decided within. Council is not required to disclose government information pursuant to an informal request and is also not required to consider an informal request for government information (s8(3)). Council can decide however by what means information is to be released in response to an informal request (s8(4)).

You can ask for specific information. Council may release information without the need for a formal application, unless there are good reasons to require one. You will be required to lodge an informal access application from with Council be mail, email, fax or in person. Formal Access applications are not required for 'open access' information. Decisions are reviewable in certain circumstances. 

Formal Application

This is the last resort if information is not accessible in any of the above 3 ways. Decisions made in response to formal applications can be reviewed.

If information can't be accessed through any of the above avenues, a formal access application can be submitted to Council. Council will request a formal application be made for information only as a last resort, likely necessary if an applicant asks for a large volume of information, if providing access would involve an unreasonable diversion of resources on behalf of Council (i.e. extensive search, retrieval from archives), or if the information sought involves personal or business information about third parties that must be consulted before the information can be released.

Section 41 of the GIPA Act lists the formal requirements for making a valid access application:

  • it must be in writing sent to or lodged at Council;
  • it must clearly indicate that it is an access application made under the GIPA Act;
  • it must be accompanied by a $30 application fee;
  • it must state a postal address in Australia as the address for correspondence in connection with the application;
  • it must include such information as is reasonably necessary to enable the government information applied for to be identified.

Upon receipt of a valid access application, Council must give the applicant notice of its decision within 20 working days, although this time can be extended under section 57(2) to consult with third parties or retrieve information from archives. Processing charges at a rate of $30 per hour may also apply as part of deciding the application.

Applicants aggrieved with a reviewable decision set out under section 80 of the GIPA Act have the right to request a review of that decision. This fact-sheet outlines available review rights under the GIPA Act.

Open Access Information

The following information is classed as open access information. According to the Government Information Public Access (GIPA) Act 2009, you can gain easy access to the following information, which Council holds:

Additional Information

According to the GIPA regulations, you can also access the following additional information:

Reports
  • Annual Reports
  • Annual Financial Reports
  • auditor’s report
  • annual reports of bodies exercising functions delegated by the local authority
  • Departmental representative reports presented at a meeting of the local authority in accordance with section 433 of the LGA    
Plans
  • Community Strategic Plan
  • EEO management plan
  • Plans of management for community land
  • environmental planning instruments, development control plans and contributions plans made under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 applying to land within the local authority’s area        
Meetings
  • agendas and business papers for any meeting of the local authority or any committee of the local authority (but not including business papers for matters considered when part of a meeting is closed to the public)
  • minutes of any meeting of the local authority or any committee of the local authority, but restricted (in the case of any part of a meeting that is closed to the public) to the resolutions and recommendations of the meeting
Codes and Policies
Registers
  • returns of the interests of councillors, designated persons and delegates, (Returns disclosing the interests of Councillors and designated persons are available for inspection at Council office during ordinary business hours from 8.30am to 5pm Monday to Friday.)
  • land register
  • register of investments
  • register of delegations
  • register of graffiti removal work kept in accordance with section 13 of the Graffiti Control Act 2008
  • register of current declarations of disclosures of political donations kept in accordance with section 328A of the LGA
  • the register of voting on planning matters kept in accordance with section 375A of the LGA
Land, Building, and Development
  • Information about development applications
  • applications for approvals under Part 1 of Chapter 7 of the LGA and any associated documents received in relation to such an application
  • applications for approvals under any other Act and any associated documents received in relation to such an application
  • records of approvals granted or refused, any variation from local policies with reasons for the variation, and decisions made on appeals concerning approvals
  • records of building certificates under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979
  • plans of land proposed to be compulsorily acquired by the local authority
  • compulsory acquisition notices
  • leases and licences for use of public land classified as community land
Orders
  • orders given under Part 2 of Chapter 7 of the LGA (for example unauthorised structures and buildings, swimming pools, excess vegetation and food matters, etc) and any reasons given under section 136 of the LGA
  • orders given under the authority of any other Act

When previous versions are required: To obtain a copy of a previous version of a document, please contact Council’s Office on 02 6830 5100 or via email breshire@lbrewarrina.nsw.gov.au

If a document is not available online: To obtain access to this document, please contact Council’s Office on 02 6830 5100 or via email breshire@brewarrina.nsw.gov.au