Public Records Act 2005

4 Interpretation
  • In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,—

    academic staff means members of the staff of a tertiary education institution who engage in teaching students or undertaking research or both

    administrative head means, in relation to—

    • (a) a public office that is not a public office to which paragraph (b) applies, the person responsible for the performance of that office, for example, a chief executive within the meaning of section 2(1) of the Public Finance Act 1989:

    • (b) a public office that involves carrying out a statutory function, the holder of that office, for example, the Registrar-General of Land:

    • (c) a local authority, the person responsible for the performance of the local authority, for example, the chief executive appointed under section 42 of the Local Government Act 2002 or the chief executive of an organisation referred to in paragraph (b) of the definition of the term local authority in section 4

    approved repository means a repository approved by the Minister under section 26

    Archives Council and Council mean the Archives Council established by section 14

    Archives New Zealand means the repository referred to in section 9

    Chief Archivist means the Chief Archivist referred to in section 10

    chief executive means the chief executive of the department

    controlling local authority, in relation to a local authority record,—

    • (a) means the local authority that controls the local authority record; and

    • (b) includes any successor to that local authority

    controlling public office

    • (a) means,—

      • (i) in relation to a public record, the public office that controls the public record:

      • (ii) in relation to a public archive, the public office that has power to determine conditions of access to the public archive; and

    • (b) includes any successor to that public office

    department means the department of State that, with the authority of the Prime Minister, is for the time being responsible for the administration of this Act

    discharge register means the register referred to in section 19(1)(b)

    discharged record means a record the status of which as a public record is cancelled in accordance with section 25

    disposal, in relation to a public record or local authority record, means—

    • (a) the transfer of control of a record; or

    • (b) the sale, alteration, destruction, or discharge of a record

    electronic includes electrical, digital, magnetic, optical, electromagnetic, biometric, and photonic

    estray record

    • (a) means a public record, public archive, or protected record that has been disposed of otherwise than—

      • (i) in accordance with an authorisation of the Chief Archivist under this Act; or

      • (ii) as required by or under another enactment; but

    • (b) does not include a discharged public record

    local authority

    • (a) has the same meaning as in section 5(1) of the Local Government Act 2002; and

    • (b) includes the following organisations defined in section 5(1) of that Act:

      • (i) a council-controlled organisation:

      • (ii) a council-controlled trading organisation:

      • (iii) a local government organisation

    local authority archive

    • (a) means a local authority record that—

      • (i) is no longer in current use by the controlling local authority; or

      • (ii) has been in existence for 25 years or more (whether or not in current use); and

    • (b) includes—

      • (i) a protected record; and

      • (ii) a local authority record that the controlling local authority resolves is worth permanent preservation

    local authority record means a record or class of records in any form, in whole or in part, created or received (whether before or after the commencement of this Act) by a local authority in the conduct of its affairs

    Minister means the Minister of the Crown who, under the authority of any warrant or with the authority of the Prime Minister, is for the time being responsible for the administration of this Act

    Minister’s papers means records created or received (whether before or after the commencement of this Act) by a Minister while holding office as a Minister of the Crown

    open access record means—

    • (a) a public record—

      • (i) that has been in existence for at least 25 years or has been transferred to the control of the Chief Archivist; and

      • (ii) that is classified as an open access record under section 44(2); and

      • (iii) to which public access has not been prohibited under section 49:

    • (b) a local authority archive—

      • (i) that is classified as an open access record under section 46(2); and

      • (ii) to which public access has not been prohibited under section 49

    parliamentary record means a record presented to, or belonging to, the House of Representatives or any of its committees

    prescribed record means a record declared under section 38 to be a prescribed record for the purposes of this Act

    private record means a record that is not created in, or received by, a public office or local authority, and that is not a Minister’s paper

    protected record means a local authority record declared under section 40 to be a protected record for the purposes of this Act

    public access register means the register referred to in section 19(1)(d)

    public archive means a public record that is under the control of the Chief Archivist

    public office

    • (a) means the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of the Government of New Zealand; and

    • (b) means the agencies or instruments of those branches of government; and

    • (c) includes (without limiting the agencies or instruments)—

      • (i) departments as defined in section 2 of the State Sector Act 1988; and

      • (ii) Offices of Parliament as defined in section 2(1) of the Public Finance Act 1989; and

      • (iii) State enterprises as defined in section 2 of the State-Owned Enterprises Act 1986; and

      • (iv) Crown entities as defined in section 7(1) of the Crown Entities Act 2004; and

      • (v) the Parliamentary Counsel Office; and

      • (vi) the Parliamentary Service; and

      • (vii) the Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives; and

      • (viii) the New Zealand Police; and

      • (ix) the New Zealand Defence Force; and

      • (x) the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service; and

      • (xi) any person or class of persons declared by an Order in Council made under section 5(1)(a)(i) to be a public office for the purposes of this Act

    public record

    • (a) means a record or a class of records, in any form, in whole or in part, created or received (whether before or after the commencement of this Act) by a public office in the conduct of its affairs; and

    • (b) includes—

      • (i) a record or a class of records declared under section 5(1)(a)(ii) to be a public record for the purposes of this Act; and

      • (ii) estray records; but

    • (c) does not include—

      • (i) a special collection; or

      • (ii) records created by the academic staff or students of a tertiary education institution, unless the records have become part of the records of that institution

    record means information, whether in its original form or otherwise, including (without limitation) a document, a signature, a seal, text, images, sound, speech, or data compiled, recorded, or stored, as the case may be,—

    • (a) in written form on any material; or

    • (b) on film, negative, tape, or other medium so as to be capable of being reproduced; or

    • (c) by means of any recording device or process, computer, or other electronic device or process

    responsible Minister means—

    • (a) the Minister of the Crown for the time being responsible for the administration of a controlling public office; or

    • (b) in the case of a controlling local authority, the Minister of the Crown for the time being responsible for the administration of the Local Government Act 2002

    restricted access record means a record to which access has been restricted in accordance with section 44(3)

    special collection

    • (a) means records collected by a public office for purposes such as research or the preservation of records; but

    • (b) does not include public records

    standards means the standards issued by the Chief Archivist under section 27

    Statistician has the meaning given to it in section 2 of the Statistics Act 1975

    student means a person enrolled at a tertiary education institution

    tertiary education institution has the same meaning as in section 7(1)(e) of the Crown Entities Act 2004

    tikanga Māori means Māori customary values and practices.

    Section 4 Archives New Zealand: substituted, on 1 February 2011, by section 4(1) of the Public Records Amendment Act (No 2) 2010 (2010 No 133).

    Section 4 chief executive: inserted, on 1 February 2011, by section 4(3) of the Public Records Amendment Act (No 2) 2010 (2010 No 133).

    Section 4 department: inserted, on 1 February 2011, by section 4(3) of the Public Records Amendment Act (No 2) 2010 (2010 No 133).

    Section 4 Minister: substituted, on 1 February 2011, by section 4(2) of the Public Records Amendment Act (No 2) 2010 (2010 No 133).