The Municipal Government Act (MGA) which provides authority for most of the activities and operations of municipal governments in Nova Scotia, also contains provisions relating to freedom of information and protection of privacy (FOIPOP). These provisions are found in Part XX of the Act (The Nova Scotia FOIPOP Act)
The intent of the FOIPOP legislation is to balance two principles:
Freedom of Information (FOI): whenever possible, information held by the Municipality should be made available to the public;
Protection of Privacy (POP): the Municipality should not improperly collect or disclose personal information.
FOIPOP provides that the public have:
During the course of conducting municipal business, a great deal of information is produced and accumulated. The legislation supports the belief that every document held by government, regardless of format, is subject to release to the general public. Exemptions from release are designed to protect against the unreasonable invasion of personal privacy; to prevent unfair advantages occurring in commercial or government transactions; to protect law enforcement activities; and to safeguard the business conducted by government.
All records in the custody or under the control of Halifax Regional Police are subject to the provisions of FOIPOP. This includes correspondence addressed to HRP from the public and as such, the correspondence may be disclosed to others than those who were addressed by the correspondence.
FOIPOP legislation tries to balance an individual's right to access records and an individual's right to privacy.
E-Mail And Other Electronic Messages - E-mail and other electronic messages sent to those domain names owned by Halifax Regional Police are subject to the FOIPOP legislation. Senders of messages should be aware that information contained in electronic correspondence (or printed versions thereof) may be disclosed to others under the FOIPOP legislation.
Using Form #1 - Access to Information Application provided by Halifax Regional Police:
1. Enter your name, address and telephone number;
2. Indicate if you are requesting general or personal information;
3. Providing as much detail as possible, describe the records you would like to access, and the time frame for the records.
4. Please sign, date and send you request to the FOIPOP Coordinator with application fee, if applicable.
You may also submit your request in a letter provided it is in writing stating that you are requesting the information under FOIPOP.
Please send your request to access information to the:
Halifax Regional Police
1975 Gottingen Street
What kind of information can I request?
You have the right to request any record in the custody or control of Halifax Regional Police.
How do I make a request?
You should always start by making an informal request. To do this, simply contact HRP. If you are told that the information is not routinely available, then you should proceed to file a FOIPOP request.
Is there a fee to process my request?
There is a $5 application fee for access to general records. There is no charge for applications for personal information or correction of personal information.
Are there additional fees charged after the initial application fee?
HRP has the authority to charge for time for preparing the information, copying of the information and sending of the records. If a charge is to be levied, you will be provided with a fee estimate prior to the request being processed.
Will I be charged if I am denied access?
Yes. The application fee will not be refunded even if you are denied full or partial access to the records.
How long does a request take?
Under the legislation, HRP is required to respond to your request within 30 days. If additional time is required (because your request was not detailed enough, you requested so much information or a third party has to be consulted), an extension can be given but HRP is required to advise the applicant when a response can be expected.
What is personal information?
Personal information is recorded information on an identifiable individual including:
Is my personal information protected?
The legislation protects personal privacy by restricting the collection, use and disclosure of personal information.
What if I am denied information?
HRP must provide you with reasons if you are denied access to information. If you are not satisfied with these reasons, you may request a review. A review must be requested within 60 days of notification. You may request a review using Form #7 Request for Review.
How much does it cost to request a review?
There is no cost for requesting a review.
What are the acceptable reasons to request a review?
A review can be requested if:
Who is the Review Officer?
The Review Officer is an independent ombudsman appointed by the Governor in Council. The Review Officer's role is to review decisions of public bodies when people are not satisfied with the response they have received from the public bodies.