Official information requests
Official information requests are governed by the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 (LGOIMA). Under this Act, everything we do is public information and our books have to be open and freely available.
Who can make a request?
Any individual, group or organisation can request information held by Environment Southland.
How do I make a request?
You have a few options available to make an official information request:
- Use our online form(mention that you require information under the LGOIMA)
- Phone us: 0800 76 88 45
- Ask in person: Corner North Rd & Price Street, Waikiwi, Invercargill
- Post your request to: Private Bag 90116, Invercargill 9840, Southland, New Zealand
- Email us:firstname.lastname@example.org
- Send us a Facebook message:www.facebook.com/environmentsouthland
Please be as specific as you can be in making your request; it helps us to find the information quickly for you. Make sure you include either a postal or email address so we can provide you with a response, even if your request is made via social media.
What will it cost?
The first half hour of time spent actioning a request for information is provided free of charge. If a request is for a significant amount of information or requires substantial collation and research, staff time and reasonable costs incurred above the first half hour will be charged at $44 per half hour.
We will advise you of the cost of processing your request before we begin working on it. You can then decide if you want to continue, withdraw or refine your request. We may ask you to pay some or all of this cost in advance. For more information on charges, read our charging policy for LGOIMA requests (page 17).
How long will it take to process my request?
Under the Official Information Act we have 20 working days to process your request. However, in some circumstances we may need to extend the time limit. We will be in contact with you if this is the case.
Information requests relating to prosecutions and investigations
Any person is entitled to seek official information from Environment Southland under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 (LGOIMA). However, Environment Southland can withhold information under LGOIMA if disclosure is likely to prejudice the investigation and detection of offences, or the right to a fair trial.
Because of the nature of criminal investigations and proceedings, as well as the applicable law, it will often not be appropriate for Environment Southland to release information or comment upon matters that are under investigation or are being adjudicated by a court.
Documents on the court record can be obtained by following the process set out in the District Court (Access to Court Documents) Rules 2017 and the Senior Courts (Access to Court Documents) Rules 2017.
Need more information?
Take a look at the Ministry of Justice's guide to official information requests, or email your questions through to us at email@example.com.