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Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy (FOIPOP)

Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy (FOIPOP)

As a public body, the Town of Kentville is subject to the Government of Nova Scotia's Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIPOP). The Municipal Government Act – which provides authority for the activities and operations of municipal government in Nova Scotia – also contains provisions relating to FOIPOP in Part XX. These pieces of legislation ensure that the town is transparent and accountable to its residents, while protecting individual privacy rights and personal information.

WHAT INFORMATION CAN BE ACCESSED, AND WHAT ARE MY RIGHTS?

Everyone has a right of access to most recorded information held by the Town, but certain exemptions do apply. Foremost, citizens have the right of protection of the privacy of personal information in the custody or under the control of the Town of Kentville (which includes such things as: your name, address, telephone number, age, sex, education, marital status, health-care history, and financial history).  Not that we HAVE all this information, but if we do it's protected.  Additionally, legislation prohibits the FOIPOP Administrator from disclosing:

  • information that could reasonably be expected to harm intermunicipal or intergovernmental relations or reveal information provided by other municipalities or governments in confidence, unless there is consent;
  • information that could reasonably be expected to harm the financial and economic interests of the town or another municipality or the Province;
  • information related to certain labour relations mediation or conciliation proceedings;
  • information subject to solicitor-client privilege;
  • someone else's personal information;
  • information that could significantly harm a third parties business interests;
  • information that could harm law enforcement; and
  • information that could harm the economic or financial interests of a public body, other individuals, or the public.

Residents have a right to access their own personal records under the control of the Town and the right to update or correct this personal information.

HOW CAN I ACCESS INFORMATION?

If you would like to access information, all requests must:

  • Be in writing (including email); and
  • Specify the subject matter of the record requested with sufficient details that the record can be identified. When making a request, please try to be as specific as possible about the information you are seeking to avoid delays in processing.

To make a FOIPOP request, you must fill out a form, which is available on this page. 

The Deputy Clerk is the FOIPOP Administrator for the Town of Kentville appointed to administer Part XX of the Municipal Government Act, and can be contacted to assist with access to information requests.  902-679-2503 or jwest@kentville.ca 

    HOW MUCH WILL IT COST?

      You are asked to accompany your letter with a $5.00 application fee (i.e. a cheque payable to the Town of Kentville, or cash at the front desk).  Additional charges may also be levied. Specifically, for larger requests, it may take significant staff time to find and organize requested documents.  Staff charge $15 for each half hour of staff time (but the first two hours are free!), a photocopying fee of $0.20 per page, and shipping and transportation costs are all potential additional costs to accessing information. For larger requests, an estimate will be provided to the applicant who must either pay the charges in advance or make an application for the charges to be waived.  Alternatively, the applicant can work with the FOIPOP administrator to narrow the scope of their request.  No fee will be charged for the applicant's own personal information.

      The administrator has 30 days to fulfil your request, starting when the request has been confirmed by the administrator and the applicant, and if fees are calculated, starting when fees are received.  The administrator may need to review archives of emails, drives of digital documents, or paper documents in file cabinets or in storage.  

      WHAT KIND OF RESPONSE CAN I EXPECT TO RECEIVE?

      There are four types of responses you might get from the Town once a decision has been made about giving you the records:

      • Access in full: you are getting everything that you have asked for;
      • Access in part: the Town will let you know that they are providing some of the information and will explain the reasons why; 
      • Withheld in full: the Town will let you know that they are not providing any of the information and will explain the reasons why; or
      • Request for an extension of time:  If staff have a large number of requests, or very large individual requests, they can extend the deadline by 30 days.  Additional deadlines must be approved by the provincial FOIPOP office.  

      Responses are normally provided within 30 days of receipt of the request.

      If you disagree with the response provided to your request, you have the right to contact the Nova Scotia Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Review Office (1-888-243-1564) to request a review of the Town's decision. You must request this review within 60 days of the Town's decisions. There is no charge for the review.

      MORE INFORMATION

      To make a request or to receive more information regarding the steps in the FOIPOP process, please contact our Administration Department for further information.