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After 20 years of governing how citizens can seek information from their Government, the Freedom of Information Act 1989 has been repealed and replaced with the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPAA).

The GIPA Act creates new rights to information that are designed to meet community’s expectations of more open and transparent government. It encourages the routine and proactive release of government information, including information held by providers of goods and services contracted by government agencies.

How members of the public may access our information

Members of the public seeking access to Council information should initially search this section of the website.

If the information is not referenced in this section, the public should contact Council and ask to speak with a Right to Information Officer.

The Officer will either advise where the information is located or request that an Informal Access Request (891kB PDF) form be lodged with Council. There is no charge for this request, however appropriate photocopying charges of obtained copies of information may apply.

The Officer will discuss the method of supply of the information, including likely timeframe. The Public will also be offered the opportunity to inspect and obtain copies of the information from Council's Murwillumbah Administration Office between the hours of 8.30am and 4.00pm Monday to Friday (except public holidays).

In limited circumstances, a Right to Information Officer will inform an applicant that their access to information will require the lodgement of a Formal Access Application (66kB PDF) with Council. The applicant will be required to pay an application fee of $30.00 and you may be required to pay an additional charge for processing the application ($30/hour).

Development Application information can be searched using the DA Tracker. Please note that DAs lodged between 1 July 2009 and 1 December 2016 will only have basic information such as copies of the Approval Notice, location mapping, links to related applications and applicant names. Further information can be accessed using the Access to information process.

Agency Information Guide

The Agency Information Guide describes the structure and functions of Council, the various types of information it holds and how people can access it.

GIPAA Agency Information Guide (183kB PDF)

Documents about Council

Documents about Council that have been tabled in Parliament:

Transcript of Public Hearings - 16 December, 2004 (68kB PDF)
Inquiry Commissioner's Opening Address - 16 February 2005 (62kB PDF)
Inquiry Commissioner's First Report - Recommendations Only (122kB PDF)
Inquiry Commissioner's First Report - Full Report (9.86mB PDF)
Inquiry Commissioner's Second Report (29.26mB PDF)

Council policy documents

Council is required by legislation to have certain policies available to the public, such as the Code of Conduct and Code of Meeting Practice. To function in accordance with various legislation, Council has adopted a considerable number of local policies. All these policies are reviewed at least every four years and amended or deleted as required. Any changes to policies must be adopted by Council.

View Council's Policies

Council general documents

View Access to Information Guidelines (613kB PDF)
View Council Annual Reports
View Management Plans and Programs
View Council Meeting Documents
View Tweed Planning Documents (including the DCP and LEP)
View all Council Application Forms
View Section 94 (S94) Developer Contribution Plans
View Section 64 (S64) Water and Sewer Development Servicing Plans

Registers

Council is required by legislation to maintain the following registers, which must be made available to the public either proactively on the website or informally through a Right to Information Officer:

Disclosure log

Agencies need to set up a disclosure log showing what information has been released in response to formal access applications, when it was released and whether other members of the public can also have access to it.

Tweed Shire Council formal access application determinations under the GIPA Act 2009 are published in a list below. Please click on the heading below to expand/collapse the detail...

Existing Formal Access Application Log

Register of Government contracts

The Council Contracts Register (313kb) contains information on those contracts to which Council is a party and valued at or over $150,000. The Contracts Register applies to Class 1, 2 and 3 contracts. The information contained in the register for each class is summarised by:

  • Class 1 - details of the contract itself must be published, including name and address of the contractor, effective contract date and duration, particulars of project under the contract, estimated amount payable;
  • Class 2 - details of the contract where there has been substantial renegotiation of terms after a tender process or contracts that will be privately financed;
  • Class 3 - details of contracts at $5 million or above and the register in addition to applicable information, must include a copy of the contract.

Returns of Interests

Returns of Interests are a formal mechanism for disclosing pecuniary interests by Councillors and designated persons.

Councillors and designated persons are required to prepare and submit written returns of interest (returns) within three months after:

  • becoming a Councillor or designated person, and
  • 30 June of each year, and
  • becoming aware of an interest they are required to disclose1

The returns are publicly available on the Council’s website free of charge2.

Councillor Returns of Interests
Designated Persons Returns of Interests

Public Interest Test

The returns may contain personal information about the person concerned, and, potentially, about third parties such as family members. The Councillor or designated person has the right to object to the release of this information. In these cases the ‘public interest test’ is applied and the returns have been edited where it has been determined that there is an overriding public interest against disclosure3.

Councillor fee

The Office of Local Government (OLG) provided advice that Councillors did not need to disclose their fee as a Councillor under Part B – Sources of income4. Some Councillors have chosen to include this information while others have not. This information is already publically reported, with the most recent report on the Mayor and Councillor Annual Fees for 2020/2021 being reported to the 6 August 2020 Council meeting.

Further information

If you would like further information please contact Council’s Coordinator Governance and Information (02) 6670 2676 or tsc@tweed.nsw.gov.au

1 Refer to Part 4 of Code of Conduct for Councillors (Model) Policy, Code of Conduct for Council Staff (Model) Policy and Code of Conduct for Council Committee Members, Delegates of Council and Council Advisers (Model) Policy.
2 In accordance with the open access information requirements under Clause 1(2)(a) of Schedule 1 to the Government Information (Public Access) Regulation 2018.
3 In accordance with section 6(4) of the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009.
4 Model Code of Conduct For Local Councils in NSW – A Guide to Completing Returns of Interests – 2020.

Further resources

Frequently Asked Questions (55kB PDF)
Information and Privacy Commission NSW Website ipc@nsw.gov.au

Access to Council Information and Services is also available on Council’s smart phone answer space m.tweed.nsw.gov.au

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