Section 70 - Policy Manuals Available Without Request

Overview

Section 70 requires the head of a public body to make available to the public, without a formal request under the Act, records of the following nature:

  • manuals, instructions, or guidelines issued to the officers or employees of the public body
  • rules, or policy statements used by the public body for interpreting an enactment or administering a program which affects the general public or a specific group

Section Reference

Section 70 of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act

  1. The head of a public body must make available to the public, without a request for access under this Act,
    1. manuals, instructions or guidelines issued to the officers or employees of the public body,
    2. substantive rules or policy statements adopted by the public body,

for the purpose of interpreting an enactment or of administering a program or activity that affects the public or a specific group of the public.

  1. The head of a public body may delete from a record made available under this section any information he or she would be entitled to refuse to disclose to an applicant.
  2. If information is deleted, the record must include a statement of
    1. (a) the fact that information has been deleted,
    2. (b) the nature of the information, and,
    3. (c) the reason for the deletion.
  3.  If a person asks for a copy of a record under this section, section 71 (2) applies.

Policy

Public bodies must make available to the public without a request for access under the Act, manuals, instructions, or guidelines issued to the officers or employees of public bodies and substantive rules or, policy statements adopted by the public body that are used to interpret enactments or administer programs or activities that affect the public or a specific group of the public.

Within this group of records, and before making these records available, the public body may delete any information that it would be entitled to refuse to disclose to an applicant. If information is deleted, the record must include a statement that information has been deleted, the nature of the deleted information and the reason for deletion.

Procedure

Public bodies should establish procedures governing the determination of material to be included in manual, instructions or guidelines and those procedures should include a methodology for determining what records would not be releasable under this section.

Interpretation

A fee may be required of the applicant, as provided under section 71(2).

Sectional Index of Commissioner's Orders

For orders organized by the Act's section numbers, Click here.

For a summary of Commissioner's orders and policy interpretation of key points, Click here.

Last updated: July 27, 2007