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Friday, October 24, 2014

Annual report season: wading through

More on content soon.

But the absurdity of Federal Government plans to disband the Office of Australian Information Commissioner is striking, given that the OAIC handled record numbers of complaints and review applications while managing to increase the closure rate of matters, and can point to important achievements in pursuing FOI and privacy themes and responsible information management in the digital age. With leadership on many fronts including culture change to break down excessive secrecy out the door, if parliament passes the bill it's advance Australia backwards.

The Reports published to date cover different ground:
Some comprehensively cover the operation of information access and privacy protection legislation including the commissioner functions and agency compliance:
Office of Australian Information Commissioner
Office of Information Commissioner (Queensland)(pdf)

The Information and Privacy Commission (NSW) report covers the functions of both commissioners but not agency compliance - statute requires a separate report on the operation of the GIPA act generally.

In Victoria there are reports from the Freedom of Information Commissioner (Victoria) and the Office of Privacy Commissioner (Victoria) (pdf). (From 17 September 2014 the OPC was replaced by the Office of the Commissioner for Privacy and Data Protection (Privacy and Data Protection Victoria)).

The Office of the Information Commissioner (Western Australia) reports on FOI related matters. There is no WA privacy legislation that covers state and local government agencies.

The Ombudsman Tasmania (the state has no information or privacy commissioner as such but the Ombudsman has information access and privacy protection oversight and merits review functions) and the Ombudsman SA who has an information access merits review function are yet to report,. So too State Records SA, responsible for the annual FOI report and Privacy Committee report; and the Office of  Information Commissioner Northern Territory.

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