Obtaining information from the Bay of Plenty Regional Council
Information relating to the Bay of Plenty Regional Council can be found on our website. You can search our website to find the information you are seeking or contact us for help.
If the information you are interested in is not available on this website or from our staff, then there are two types of information requests that we can help you with:
- Requests for information under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 (LGOIMA) – this applies to official information held by the Bay of Plenty Regional Council, its Council Controlled Organisations and its contractors.
- Privacy Act 2020 requests – you can request to see any personal information we hold about you under the Privacy Act 2020.
Making a Privacy Act request
You can make a privacy request for access to, or correction of, information that we hold about you. We may withhold or refuse to give you some information in accordance with sections 27 to 29 of the Privacy Act 2020.
There is no charge for Privacy Act requests.
If you are not satisfied with our response you can contact the Office of the Privacy Commissioner.
Making an LGOIMA request
Anyone can make a LGOIMA request to the Bay of Plenty Regional Council.
You can make a LGOIMA request for any information held by Bay of Plenty Regional Council in its official capacity, such as:
- Council meeting agendas, minutes and decisions
- Reports, data and investigations
- Policies and procedures
- Information regarding our decision-making processes
- Information about resource consents and other permits
Please note that the Bay of Plenty Regional Council is not required to create any new information in response to your request.
The request may be verbal or in writing, though we recommend putting your request in writing so that we can clearly understand what information you are seeking.
You can make your request in person, by phone, in writing (by post or email) or through the online request below.
We must provide a decision on your LGOIMA request as soon as reasonably practicable and no later than 20 working dates from the date of the request.
We can extend that timeframe in certain circumstances. We will let you know if we need to extend the timeframe to make a decision on your request.
You can request that we treat your LGOIMA request as urgent. You need to provide reasons as to why the LGOIMA request is urgent.
When we respond to your request
When we make a decision on your LGOIMA request we may:
- Provide the requested information;
- Provide the requested information with some information redacted (such as for privacy reasons);
- Withhold all or part of the information; or
- Refuse all or part of the request.
We will make our decision to withhold or refuse information in accordance with the grounds in s 6, 7 and 17 LGOIMA and will provide you with our reasons for doing so. Some of the grounds in which we can withhold information are:
- To protect the maintenance of law, such as information relating to offences or judicial proceedings
- To protect the safety of a person
- To protect privacy
- To maintain legal privilege
- To protect trade secrets or avoid prejudicing a commercial position
- To allow Bay of Plenty Regional Council to carry out commercial activities or negotiations
- To protect confidential information that would be damaging to the public interest if it was released
If your LGOIMA request relates to the functions of a different agency then we may transfer your request to that agency in accordance with s 12 LGOIMA within 10 working days of the request. We will let you know if we need to do this.
If your LGOIMA request is for a significant amount of information or requires considerable collation and research, we are entitled to charge based on the Ministry of Justice Charging Guidelines for Official Information Act 1982 Requests and the BOPRC LGOIMA Response and Proactive Release Policy 2021.
If we decide it is reasonable to charge, under these guidelines you are entitled to:
- The first hour of time free.
- Twenty pages of free photocopying.
- Council can recover any other actual costs (e.g. reproducing a photograph).
- Time in excess of an hour is charged at $38 per half hour/30 minutes. We may charge a higher rate if we need to engage a contractor to respond to the request.
- Additional copying is charged at 20 cents per A4 size page.
Where charges are payable you will be advised of the cost before we begin work to prepare the information to be supplied to you. You can then decide if you want to continue, withdraw or refine your request in a way which may reduce or remove the need to charge for the information. A deposit of the cost in advance of providing the information may be required.
Proactive release on BOPRC website
We may publish LGOIMA responses on the BOPRC website if they involve information with a high level of public interest. We will not publish the names of the person who made the request. You can find more information on BOPRC’s approach to proactive release in the BOPRC LGOIMA Response and Proactive Release Policy 2021.
Contacting the Office of the Ombudsman
You have the right to lodge a complaint with the Ombudsman under section 27(3) LGOIMA if you are unhappy with any part of our decision (e.g. to extend the timeframe, to charge a fee, to withhold information) or if you have any concerns on how we have dealt with your request and would like the opportunity to have your request reviewed. The Ombudsman’s Office can be contacted by calling 0800 802 602, emailing email@example.com or visit their website.