UK government could charge fees for requesting official information

Via Open Democracy:

The public could be charged for requesting government information, according to the UK’s next information commissioner.

Speaking to MPs, John Edwards suggested that some people were “abusing” the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act, which is used to hold public organisations to account.

He said that, for some FOI requests, it is “legitimate” to ask requesters to meet the cost of digging out the relevant information.

“Citizens wanting to engage often don’t understand the way in which government works.” He suggested people should “entrust” government departments to release “the most relevant information”, instead of trying to obtain lots of official documents.


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