The County Council is already honest and open in all that it does and the information it holds. Previous legislation, such as the Data Protection Act 1998, provide a regulation framework for what information we can give and to whom. The Government have passed the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the FoI Act). This establishes a statutory general right of access to all types of recorded information held by public authorities.
The FoI Act also sets out exemptions from that general right and places a number of obligations on public authorities. The Act applies to many public authorities, including local authorities, and was brought fully into force on 1 January 2005. Local authorities will have:
One of the aims of the Act is to ensure that public authorities are clear and proactive about the information they make public. To that end, Local Authorities have a duty to prepare a publication scheme and have it approved by the Information Commissioner. The publication scheme must give details of the classes of information which the authority publishes or intends to publish, in what form it is or will be published, and the charge, if any. The publication scheme should also include how members of the public can access the information.
To access the Powys Council publication scheme, click on the link: Publication Scheme
Some information released through a Freedom of Information request may be of general public interest. In such cases, Powys County Council will make this information available through the Publication Scheme.
Powys County Council, along with many other local authorities, has recently been experiencing a huge rise in Freedom of Information (FOI) requests from companies offering to trace the next of kin of persons being buried under the Public Health Act 1948. In response to the volume of FOI requests on this subject the Council has created a page to make public all cases it refers to the Treasury Solicitor. In this way the Council has fulfilled its obligation under section 22 of the FOI Act (future publication) and will from this point forward refuse all such requests and refer applicants to the following page for Public Funerals.
Please check the publication scheme before making a request as the information may already be available.
On making a request for information to the Council (unless the information falls under one of the specific exemptions in the Act) you are entitled
There are various exemptions under the Act. The main exemption is that if the information is contained in the Council's Publication Scheme then we will simply let you know that the information is already available.
To be valid a request:-
To help you make valid requests that properly answer your questions we will contact you on receipt of a request to discuss what information is available. If you have any general queries about the FOI and Powys County Council please contact Information Management (right).
Requests for information can be submitted directly to the relevant Department. If you do not know which Department holds the information you need, you can e-mail Information Management at email@example.com. If you do not have an e-mail account, or are using a public computer, you can use the the e-mail form below. Please remember that if you want us to respond, you must enter either an e-mail or postal address, or both.
There are several categories of information that will be exempt under the Freedom of Information Act. The following list is a selection from these categories, to give you an idea of categories of information that could be exempt within Powys County Council. A full list of exemptions, along with clarification and advise, can be found on the website of the Information Commissioners Office.
Public authorities can make a charge for making the information available. The cost of finding the information and all costs of making copies can be charged. There is a cost limit of £450; in other words, requests costing more than £450 to satisfy need not be carried out.
You will find advice about the Freedom of Information Act and the Publication Scheme on the website of the Information Commissioner's Office. This gives clear guidance on what you can expect from a public body, and the exemptions that apply under the Act.
Powys County Council accepts the following responsibilities for personal information recorded through this web page:-
Detailed guidance can be found on our Freedom of Information Web pages or from the Information Management Team.
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