The Freedom of Information Act 2000 gives a general right of access to all types of recorded information held by public authorities. It also sets out exemptions from that right of access and places a number of obligations on public authorities, including Ashfield District Council.
Any person who makes a request to a public authority for information must be informed whether the public authority holds that information and, subject to exemptions, supplied with that information.
Individuals also have the right of access to information about themselves under the Data Protection Act 2018.
Section 19 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 requires every public authority to adopt and maintain a Publication Scheme, which has been approved by the Information Commissioner and to publish information in accordance with that Scheme. The Information Commissioner has issued a Model Publication Scheme to be adopted by all public authorities.
Ashfield District Council has based its Publication Scheme on the Model Publication issued by the Information Commission which provides seven classes of information:
1) Who we are and what we do
2) What we spend and how we spend it
3) What our priorities are and how are we doing
4) How we make decisions
5) Our polices and procedures
6) Lists and registers
7) Services provided by the council
How much do publications cost?
The Council recognises that making information available proactively is in the public interest and imposing high levels of charges for routine information could be seen to undermine public access to official information. Most of the information made available under the Model Publication Scheme is published on the Council's website and will be made available no cost.
The Model Publication Scheme allows for fees to be charged where it can be justified. The Council will only charge a fee where a statutory charge applies or the information is provided in hard copy form.
A copy of the Council's Charging Policy can be found by clicking this link.
How are they published?
Most of the information made available under the Model Publication Scheme is published on the website. Where the document or information is not available on the website, the guide to information will specify who to contact to arrange an appointment to view or obtain copies.
What about information not published under the Publication Scheme?
Information held by the Council, which has not been published under this Scheme, can be requested in writing under the Freedom of Information Act.
The publication of the Scheme is a requirement of Section 19 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. A Scheme is a commitment to routinely and proactively provide information to the public. It is important therefore that the Scheme meets your needs. We welcome suggestions for additional information that could be included or how the Scheme might be improved. Any questions, comments or complaints about this Scheme should be sent to:
Ashfield District Council
Or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org