On my way into the CBC this morning for an all-PC Candidates Round Table taping with Island Morning Host Mitch Cormier, I stopped at the Canada Post mailboxes down by the Ft. Augustus Community Centre and found a brown envelope in my box from Karen A. Rose, the Information and Privacy Commissioner for PEI.
It was a hard copy of her ruling [Order no. FL-19-002] on a request I had made to Ms. Rose to review a decision by the Head of the PEI Department of Finance to deny my request for a waiver of fees, which I had submitted back on August 4, 2018 associated with an Access to Information Request I had submitted to the Department of Finance on July 17, 2018.
The Information Commissioner’s Order is now a public document and can be found in its entirety on the government’s website.
To give you the “Coles Notes” version of her ruling: Ms. Rose’s Order sets a precedent that any Islander who seeks to hold the government to account – and requests government records in an attempt to do so – should be given those records free of charge if they can’t afford the processing fees for that request! In my books, that’s huge.
It’s a 23 page decision, but here are a few of my favourite paragraphs:
NOBODY BUT NOBODY SHOULD HAVE TO PAY THESE FEES.
That is great nrws, Kevin.