Liberals block FOIPOP officer from appearing at Human Resources

October 28, 2014

NDP leader Maureen MacDonald is concerned Nova Scotia’s Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Review Officer is being blocked from appearing at the provincial Human Resources committee.

“For a government that claims to be a national leader in openness and accountability, this is far from what we would expect,” said MacDonald. “During the election the Premier promised to improve FOIPOP rules but so far he isn’t even willing to allow the review officer he appointed to appear before a provincial committee to answer questions.”

At a provincial Human Resources committee meeting today, Oct. 28, a motion was made to have Nova Scotia’s Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Review Officer appear before the committee to answer questions. Liberal government committee members were quick to refuse and the motion was defeated.

In the last 12 months complaints about FOIPOP requests taking longer than usual and filers being quoted extraordinary estimates have been piling up. Government says government departments are often overwhelmed with requests and don’t have resources like extra staff to process requests.

“The lengthy processing times and estimates being quoted through the FOIPOP system are making our province less transparent and less accountable. That is a serious problem and we need some answers,” said MacDonald.

“It’s clear from the Liberal government’s actions today they have no interest in improving our FOIPOP system. They’ve acknowledged there are issues and they are refusing to act,” said MacDonald.