What is the Freedom of Information Act?

The Freedom of Information Act gives everybody the right to information held by a public authority, including local government and Arms Length Management Organisations that are set up to manage a Council’s housing stock (ALMOs). Monitoring Group is an ALMO.

You are entitled to any information that is not personal information, or that is not exempt under the Act.  Exempt information may be information that is provided in confidence or may relate to national security, law enforcement or commercial interests.  Other information, such as information that is likely to be published in the future, audit information and information subject to legal privilege, may also be exempt.

You can access information that is held by an organisation:

  • Looking at this website – The a-z section is a quick and easy way to find information available on their site.
  • Checking the councils Publication Scheme which is a list of the information held by the council and gives details on how to obtain the information. A copy is available from housing offices the civic centre and main libraries.

Asking us for information

Please give as much detail about the information as possible, as this will help us to locate it more quickly.  Please also provide your name, contact address and telephone number. An application can be submitted by:

An application form is also available from the Council’s web site for submission on line.  Always keep a copy of your application and of any other correspondence you send in case of query later on.

We do not normally charge to provide information to our customers, as our policy is to provide an open, transparent and accessible service. However, if your request is for information that is difficult or expensive to retrieve, such as large format plans or drawings, or where specialist reproduction is required, we may levy a charge.

Also, if it will take more than 2 1/2 days of officer time to determine whether or not Monitoring Group holds the information and to locate, retrieve and extract the information, rather than refuse your request, we may ask you for further details, so we can provide the information you are most interested in. We will always tell you if this applies to your application.

We will acknowledge your application within 2 working days and request any further particulars that we need to locate the information that you seek.  Once we have all the necessary details to locate the information we will process your application and reply to you within 20 working days.

We will:

  • tell you whether or not we hold the information described in your request and, if so
  • communicate that information to you, or
  • explain why we cannot provide the information, e.g. because it is exempt or would take too long to prepare.