Official Information Act 1982

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22 Right of access to internal rules affecting decisions

(1)

Subject to section 6(a) to (d), section 7, section 9(2)(a), (b), (ba), (i), and (j), and section 10 and to subsections (2) and (6), every person has a right to and shall, on request made under this section, be given access to any document (including a manual) which is held by a department or Minister of the Crown or organisation and which contains policies, principles, rules, or guidelines in accordance with which decisions or recommendations are made in respect of any person or body of persons in his or its personal capacity.

(2)

The right conferred by subsection (1) may be exercised only by—

(a)

a New Zealand citizen; or

(b)

a permanent resident of New Zealand; or

(c)

a person who is in New Zealand; or

(d)

a body corporate which is incorporated in New Zealand; or

(e)

a body corporate which is incorporated outside New Zealand but which has a place of business in New Zealand.

(3)

Sections 12(2) and (3), 13 to 15A, and 19 shall apply, with all necessary modifications, to a request made under subsection (1).

(4)

Where, by virtue of any of the provisions of section 6(a) to (d), section 7, section 9(2)(a), (b), (ba), (i), and (j), there is good reason for withholding some of the information contained in a document to which subsection (1) relates, the department or Minister of the Crown or organisation shall, unless it is impracticable to do so, either—

(a)

make a copy of that document available with such deletions or alterations as are necessary; or

(b)

provide another document stating the substance and effect of the document except as it relates to the information withheld.

(5)

Where a document is made available under subsection (4), the department or Minister of the Crown or organisation shall, subject to section 10, give to the applicant—

(a)

the reason for withholding the information; and

(b)

if the applicant so requests, the grounds in support of that reason, unless the giving of those grounds would itself prejudice the interests protected by section 6(a) to (d) or section 7 or section 9(2)(a) or (b) or (ba) or (i) or (j) and (in the case of the interests protected by section 9(2)(a) or (b) or (ba) or (i) or (j)) there is no countervailing public interest.

(6)

Nothing in this section authorises or permits Public Trust or the Maori Trust Office to make available any information that is contained in a document to which subsection (1) relates but that relates to the making of decisions or recommendations by Public Trust or the Maori Trustee—

(a)

in their capacity as trustee within the meaning of the Trustee Act 1956; or

(b)

in any other fiduciary capacity.

Section 22(1): amended, on 1 April 1987, by section 4(2) of the Official Information Amendment Act 1987 (1987 No 8).

Section 22(3): amended, on 1 April 1987, by section 9(2) of the Official Information Amendment Act 1987 (1987 No 8).

Section 22(4): amended, on 1 April 1987, by section 4(2) of the Official Information Amendment Act 1987 (1987 No 8).

Section 22(5)(b): replaced, on 1 April 1987, by section 4(2) of the Official Information Amendment Act 1987 (1987 No 8).

Section 22(6): replaced, on 1 March 2002, by section 170(1) of the Public Trust Act 2001 (2001 No 100).