Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy
The Freedom of Information Coordinator for the City of Windsor responds to all Municipal Freedom of Information requests made under the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. The Coordinator ensures that each request follows the appropriate processes, meets all deadlines and notification processes as outlined in the Act.
The Act - Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (MFIPPA):
The Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act came into effect on January 1, 1991 and applies to municipalities and local boards termed “institutions” under the Act. These include the following:
- Municipal Corporations
- School Boards
- Public Utilities Commissions
- Hydroelectric Commissions
- Police Commissions
- Transit Commissions
- Conservation Authorities
- Boards of Health
- Joint Boards of Management established under the Municipal Act
- Library Boards
- Suburban Roads Commissions
- Local Services Boards
- District Welfare Administration Boards
- Police Villages
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The Act – Overview:
For the purposes of fulfilling the duties assigned under the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, the City Clerk has been delegated the responsibilities and powers of performing the duties as the “head” within the meaning of the Act.
The Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act is divided into four parts:
- Part One – Freedom of Information
- Part Two – Protection of Individual Privacy
- Part Three – Appeal Procedures
- Part Four – General information
This Act provides individuals the right of access to both corporate records and their own personal information maintained by the City of Windsor. The Act also provides for the protection of personal information that has been collected by the City of Windsor.
The Information and Privacy Commissioner is appointed under ss. 4(1) of the Provincial Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and is an officer of the Legislature independent of the Government or any institution. The Information and Privacy Commission (IPC) hears appeals and assists institutions to meet their obligations under the Act.
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What is a Record?
A record means any record of information however recorded, whether in printed form, on film, by electronic means or otherwise, and includes correspondence, a memorandum, a book, a plan, a map, a drawing, a diagram, a pictorial or graphic work, a photograph, a film, a microfilm, a sound recording, a videotape, a machine readable record, any other documentary material, regardless of physical form or characteristics, and any copy thereof. This also includes any record that is capable of being produced from a machine readable record under the control of an institution by means of computer hardware and software or any other information storage equipment and technical expertise normally used by the institution.
Requestors should note that not all records are readily accessible as some records may fall into one of the exemptions listed within the context of the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. In some cases it is necessary to protect the confidentiality of a record(s) of interest to the Corporation or third parties. Some records will not be released in order to protect the privacy of individuals contained in the personal information the Corporation holds.
The City of Windsor has in its custody and control corporate records consisting of both general records and personal information banks. These records are controlled by the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. The directory of records is a list of the general classes or types of records and personal information banks in the custody or control of the City.
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How to Access Records:
You may write a letter and submit your letter to:
Freedom of Information Coordinator
Office of the City Clerk, Room 530
350 City Hall Square West
Windsor, ON N9A 6S1
This must be accompanied by a mandatory, non-refundable $5.00 access fee. Your cheque or money order should be made payable to the City of Windsor.
You may complete a Freedom of Information request form, available in the Office of the City Clerk, Room 530, 5th Floor of New City Hall. In making your request, be sure to provide as much detail as possible since this helps in the search of records. For in-person requests, the $5.00 fee can be paid by cash, debit or credit card.
If the request is for your own personal information, proof of identification is required. Please include a photocopy of a piece of your identification bearing your signature when mailing in your request.
If you are acting as an agent for an individual other than yourself, please include a letter of consent duly signed and dated from that individual authorizing you to act on his/her behalf.
For further information you may contact us at 519-255-6211.
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Other Costs Associated with a Freedom of Information Request:
Depending on the nature of your request and the volume of records requested, there may be additional fees associated with your request, such as:
- Photocopies and computer printouts, $0.20 per page.
- Floppy disks, $10 for each disk.
- Manually searching a record, $7.50 for each 15 minutes spent by a person (n/a for accessing your own personal information).
- Preparing a record for disclosure, including severing a part of the record, $7.50 for each 15 minutes spent by any person (n/a for accessing your own personal information).
- Developing a computer program or other method of producing a record from a machine readable record, $15 for each 15 minutes spent by any person.
- Costs, including computer costs, that the institution incurs in locating, retrieving, processing and copying the personal information requested if those costs are specified in an invoice that the institution has received.
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Appealing an Access Decision
If you are not satisfied with the decision given by the Freedom of Information Coordinator for the City of Windsor, under the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, you may appeal that decision to the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner/Ontario within 30 days of receipt of the decision letter and request a review. The appeal fee is $10 for personal information requests and $25 for all other requests. The appeal fee must be sent together with the appeal form to:
Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario
2 Bloor Street East
(416) 326-3333 or 1-800-387-0073
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