Right to information

Applying for access

Requests for access to documents under Right to Information (RTI) legislation exclude documents that are already available via other means.

For example, minutes of Council meetings are readily available public documents which can be accessed by the community. Before making a formal Right to Information application, check this website or contact us to find the location of information.

All applications must clearly identify the specific documents requested, or provide enough information about the documents, to enable the decision-maker to identify the documents being sought.

How to apply

If you are applying for access to personal information on someone's behalf, you must provide a copy of the letter of authorisation to act. Both parties must also provide evidence of their identities.

If you are unable to submit the supporting documentation with your application, you have up to 10 business days from making the application to do so.

Other requirements

All applications must clearly identify the specific documents requested, or provide enough information about the documents, to enable the decision-maker to identify the documents being sought.

Complete and submit your application

For documents that are not available through other avenues of access, applications need to be in writing. You can either:

  • write a letter to the City's RTI/IP decision-maker, or
  • download and complete a Right to Information and Information Privacy Access application form from the Queensland Government's Right to Information website,

Submit your completed application:

By mail

Post your letter / completed application form and certified copies of supporting documentation to:

RTI/IP Decision-Maker
City of Gold Coast
GOLD COAST MC QLD 9726

In person

Submit your letter / completed application at one of our customer service centres (Monday to Friday between 8.15am and 4.30pm). Please bring your original documents for sighting by the Council officer.

By email

Email your letter / completed application form and certified copies of supporting documentation to rtiip@goldcoast.qld.gov.au

Please contact the RTI/IP Decision Maker on 07 5581 7501 if you need help with your application.

Evidence of identity

If some of the documents you are applying for contain your personal information, you must provide evidence of identity with your application, or within 10 business days of making the application.

Documents that provide sufficient evidence of identity include:

  • current driver's licence
  • identifying page of a current passport
  • birth certificate
  • copy of prisoner's identity card certified by corrective services
  • statutory declaration of an individual who has known the applicant for at least one year.

This document must be certified by a Justice of the Peace, Commissioner for Declarations, lawyer or notary public.

Fees & charges

Non-personal information

Access to documents that are not related to an individual's personal information will incur an application fee, currently $52.60.

Please contact the City's Right to Information unit on 07 5581 7501 or by email to rtiip@goldcoast.qld.gov.au should you wish to have a Notice to Pay emailed to you for payment of this fee.

If it takes more than five hours to process the application, processing charges may apply, currently $32.60 for each of the first 5 hours and $8.15 for each 15 minutes, or part thereof, spent dealing with the application.

A further charge of $0.25 applies for each black and white copy of an A4 document.

Note: Documents containing both non-personal information and personal information will incur both the above non-personal application fee and processing charges.

Timelines

Council has 25 business days from the date of receipt to process an application and provide a decision on access.

This timeline can be subject to extension, depending on the requirements of the application. For example, when a third-party consultation is required, a further 10 business days is added to the processing time.

We will let you know if an application is outside the scope of the Right to Information Act 2009 within 10 business days.

We will let you know if the application does not meet all the requirements of a valid application within 15 business days. We will also provide advice for making a valid application.

Types of access to requested information

Documents can be released under RTI via inspection of the original documents or through the provision of copies.

Applicants should state their preferred access option at the time of making an application.

We can provide a private reading room (by prior arrangement) to inspect documents. This facility is only available at our Waterside West office at Holden Place, Bundall.

RTI exemptions

Access to some documents may not be available. This is due to the exemptions and public interest tests provided within the legislation.

Examples of matters which may restrict the release of a document include:

  • information subject to legal professional privilege
  • information that could endanger a person's safety
  • disclosure of the personal information of an individual
  • disclosure of information that could affect confidential communications
  • information that could disclose the trade secrets of an agency or another person.

For a full listing visit the Queensland Legislation website. Refer to the Right to Information Act 2009 and Information Privacy Act 2009.