The Freedom of Information Act 2000 was passed on 30 November 2000. The Act applies to public authorities and those providing services for them. This includes local councils and parish meetings without a separate parish council. The Act was brought fully into force on 1 January 2005.
Pursuant to s.19 of the Act, local councils have to produce a 'publication scheme' (a guide to the information they hold which is publicly available). The duty for local councils (including parish meetings without a separate parish council) to adopt a publication scheme was imposed on the 28 February 2003. ChALC worked closely with NALC and the Information Commissioners Office to produce a Model Publication Scheme which member councils can tailor for their own use.
Individual enquiries in aspect of the Act can be addressed to the Information Commissioner via their information line – 01625 54 57 45 or website.
Local Councils wanting to know more about the Act in general may find the Legal Topic Note provided by NALC useful and it can be found here.