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RTI Access applications

Find out how to apply for access to City of Gold Coast information:

Applying for access

Requests for access to documents under Right to Information (RTI) and Information Privacy (IP) legislation exclude documents that are already available via other means.

For example, minutes of Council meetings are readily available public documents, which can be accessed by the community. So before making a formal Right to Information application, check City of Gold Coast's website or contact the City about the location of information.

For documents that are not available through other avenues of access, applications need to be made in writing, via a letter, to the City's RTI/IP decision-maker or by downloading and completing an application form.

The Right to Information and Information Privacy Access form can be downloaded from the Queensland Government's Right to Information website.

The Information Privacy Personal Information Amendment Application form can also be downloaded from the Personal Information Amendment section of their website.

Letters or the completed application form must be addressed and forwarded to:

RTI/IP Decision-Maker
City of Gold Coast
PO Box 5042
GCMC 9726

or email rtiip@goldcoast.qld.gov.au.

All applications must clearly identify the specific documents requested or provide sufficient information about the documents, to enable the decision-maker to identify the documents being sought.

Evidence of identity

When making an application for access to personal information, evidence of identity is required with the application, or within 10 business days of making the application. Without this evidence the application can not be processed.

If an application for access to personal information is made on someone’s behalf, a copy of the letter of authorisation to act, is required. Both parties are also required to provide evidence of their identities.

When applying

  • By post - attach a certified copy of the identification document to the application.
  • In person - produce the original identification document for a qualified Customer Service Officer to certify or the Right to Information and Information Privacy Decision Maker to sight.
  • By email or fax - provide a certified copy of the identification document to Council.

A certified copy is considered valid if it is witnessed by a lawyer or notary public, commissioner for declarations or justice of the peace.

Documents that provide sufficient evidence of identity

  • current driver’s licence
  • identifying page of a current passport
  • birth certificate
  • copy of prisoner’s identity card certified by corrective services
  • Statutory declaration of an individual who has known the applicant for at least one year.

Fees and charges

Access to documents that are not related to an individual’s personal information will incur an application fee of $50.80 and possibly processing charges of $7.85 for each 15 minutes, or part there of, spent dealing with the application.

The processing charges will only be applied if the total time taken to process the application is more than five hours. A further charge of $0.25 will be incurred for each black and white copy of an A4 document.

No charges are incurred for access to documents or parts of documents that relate to an individual’s personal information. Examples of personal information are described below.

However, documents which contain both personal information and non-personal information will incur an application fee and processing charges as detailed above.

Payment by credit card of the statutory Right to Information application fee cannot be accepted from the Right to Information and Information Privacy Access application form. Please contact the City's Right to Information unit on 07 5581 7501 to have a Notice to Pay emailed to you.

Timelines

The City has 25 business days from the date of receipt to process an application and provide a decision on access.

This timeline can be subject to extensions depending on particular requirements of the application (for example, when third party consultation is required a further 10 business days is added to the processing time).

If an application is outside the scope of Right to Information (RTI) or Information Privacy (IP), Council will advise the applicant within 10 business days.

If the application does not meet all the requirements of a valid application, Council will advise the applicant within 15 business days, with an aim to assist the applicant in making a valid application.

Types of access to requested information

Documents can be released under RTI and IP via inspection of the original documents or through the provision of copies.

Applicants should state their preferred access option at the time of making an application.

We can provide a private reading room (by prior arrangement) to inspect documents. This facility is only available at our Bundall Customer Service Centre at 8 Karp Court, Bundall.

Personal information

The City of Gold Coast Personal Information Holdings statement sets out details of the types of personal information we hold and how we handle this information.

Personal information is information or an opinion about an individual whose identity is apparent, or can reasonably be ascertained from the information or opinion.

Examples of personal information include:

  • a person's name, address, phone number or email address
  • a photograph of a person
  • the fact that a person is a member, or leader, of an association and their attendance at meetings
  • a persons' medical details or health information
  • details about a person's religious or sexual preferences
  • details about a person's membership of a trade union or professional body.

RTI exemptions

One of the primary objectives of RTI and IP is to facilitate, greater community access to the information of government, however the legislation also acknowledges that there is still a need for balance, to ensure that information contrary to the public interest is not released.

As such, it is important to remember that access to some documents may be prevented, due to the exemptions and public interest tests provided within the legislation.

Examples of matters which may restrict the release of a document include:

  • information subject to legal professional privilege
  • information that could endanger a person’s safety
  • disclosure of the personal information of an individual
  • disclosure of information that could affect confidential communications
  • information that could disclose the trade secrets of an agency or another person.

For a full listing of all exemptions and public interest balancing tests go to the Queensland Legislation website and refer to the Right to Information Act 2009 and Information Privacy Act 2009.

Personal information amendment

If the documents provided to you by Council, either through normal access or an Right to Information / Information Privacy application, contains inaccurate, out of date, incomplete or misleading personal information, you may request to have the information amended.

In many cases this can be achieved informally, by contacting the relevant City business unit, responsible for the information and providing advice that the information is incorrect. For example, an incorrect address on a rates notice can be changed by notifying Financial Services of the correct details.

Alternatively, you can make a formal request to amend your personal information via a letter to Council's RTI/IP Decision-Maker.

You can also download and complete a Personal Information amendment application form provided by the Queensland Government Right to Information website and forward to Council's RTI/IP Decision-Maker.

RTI/IP Decision-Maker
Gold Coast City Council
PO Box 5042
Gold Coast MC 9726

or email: rtiip@goldcoast.qld.gov.au

You will need to provide evidence of identity required with the application, or within 10 business days of making the application. Refer to the 'Evidence of identity' subheading above for more information.

All applications must provide sufficient information to enable the identification of the relevant document containing the incorrect information.

Advice must also be provided on what information is incorrect, why it is incorrect and what changes need to be made to correct the information.

No application fee or processing charge is applicable when making an amendment application.

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