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GIPA information access
Under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (the GIPA Act) a person has the right to apply for access to documents held by Council. Documents include those held on electronic and paper files.

Making an application
Informal access application
Council may release information following an informal request, that is, a request that is not a formal access application, unless there is an overriding public interest against disclosure.

The release of information may be subject to any reasonable conditions imposed by Council and may be made in any format.

Council retains the discretion to require a formal access application in certain circumstances which could include: 
  • where request involves a significant diversion of resources 
  • the requested material contains information about a third party that cannot be deleted easily or without rendering the information useless, and consultation would need to occur, or 
  • the material is sensitive in nature and requires careful balancing of public interests.
You can download an informal access application (PDF 128 kb) or email Council at council@shoalhaven.nsw.gov.au. Your email should include the following:
  • your full contact details
  • sufficient information to allow the information requested to be identified.
Formal access application
Council may release information following the lodgement of a formal access application. Applications must be made in writing, contain sufficient information to enable the information requested to be identified, and be accompanied by a $30 application fee.
Council has 20 working days to decide an application (with provision for that time limit to be extended by a maximum of 15 days if the records need to be retrieved from archives or third parties need to be consulted).

If you make a formal application, you have a legally enforceable right to be provided with the information unless there is an overriding public interest against its disclosure.

Decisions about formal access applications are subject to internal review by Council as well as to external review the Information Commissioner and /or the Administrative Decisions Tribunal. There is more information on rights of review.

You can download a formal access application (PDF 155 kb).