Charges for freedom of information requests?

Honiton Town Council support recommendation to introduce a charge.

Charges could be introduced by Honiton Town Council to process Freedom of Information Requests.

Councillors, at a meeting of the policy and finance committee last week, backed a recommendation to introduce a charge for all hard copy requests.

Currently, there is a limit in place regarding the cost of providing information -�450 for parish councils.

Any request exceeding this amount can be refused.

Costs are estimated at �25 per hour, taking into account locating and extracting the requested information.

At present, the council does not charge for information under the publication scheme.

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Councillor Liz Tirard said: “Charging may stop people making requests on spurious grounds.”

The meeting heard, over the past two years, there had been four cases where requests had taken up a lot of staff time.

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