"Access and Privacy" or "Freedom of Information" (FOI) is a term referring to legislation which, in the municipal context, is known as the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (MFIPPA).
The legislation provides the parameters for access to information held by the Town of Aurora and the rules for protecting the personal privacy of individuals whose personal information is held by the Town.
How do I make a request?
Anyone wishing to obtain information held by the Town of Aurora, should begin by directing their request to the department where the information is expected to be held. If the information is public information, or information that is routinely disclosed as determined by policy, the department should release the record(s).
However, in the event the request pertains to records which are not public information, or the subject of routine disclosure, the requester will be directed to submit a formal Access or Freedom of Information request under the MFIPPA. The requester will be referred to the Access and Privacy staff in the Clerk's Office.
A formal request must be in writing, either by letter or on the Access Request Form, to the Clerk's Office, and be accompanied by the prescribed fee of $5 (cheque or money order made payable to: The Corporation of the Town of Aurora. The request must be clear and definitive before processing can begin.
Records considered appropriate to be disclosed - either in whole or with some information severed in accordance with exemptions prescribed in MFIPPA, will be made available to the requester. Requests for general information will be charged a fee as prescribed by regulation for the searching and preparation functions ($30 per hour), as well as for photocopying ($0.20 per page).
Requests for personal information will be invoiced for photocopies only. An estimate of fees may be provided and a deposit required prior to gathering the required records.
How long will the process take?
The Act requires that a decision regarding access must be provided within 30 days of receipt of the request. Under certain conditions, a time extension may be in order.
Who has access to personal information?
The legislation recognizes the need to protect the personal privacy of individuals who become associated with the Town, whether as members of the public, clients, contractors or employees.
Only the identified individual may have access to personal information relating to that individual, unless he or she has consented in writing to the release of this information to a third party. Access requests for personal information must be in writing and accompanied with the requisite $5 fee. The Act sets out the rules for disclosure of personal information and it is strictly adhered to.
Is there an appeal process?
A requester, who feels there are records responsive to his or her request that have not been provided, or who objects to the severance of any information, may launch an appeal to the Information and Privacy Commissioner (IPC). The appeal fee for general records is $25 and $10 for personal information. Appeals are forwarded by the requester directly to the IPC at
Information and Privacy Commissioner
2 Bloor Street East, Suite 1400
Toronto, ON M4W 1A8
Any person who feels their privacy has been breached because personal information has been improperly disclosed by the Town of Aurora may, without charge, lay a complaint to the IPC, which will undertake an inquiry.
For additional information contact the Legal and Legislative department at 905-727-3123, Ext. 4222 for assistance.
Access Request Form
For further information visit the Ontario Information and Privacy Commission