This is an HTML version of an attachment to the Freedom of Information request 'Documents and Communication Pertaining to Toms Road Tawonga'.


 
20 February 2019 
File Number: 900.01 
Our Ref: F19.003 
 
Sarah Prime 
via email only to:  [FOI #5259 email] 
 
 
Dear Ms Prime 
 
Re: Freedom of Information request 
 
I refer to your email dated 15 February 2019, where you sought access to documents under 
the Freedom of Information Act 1982 [Vic] (the FOI Act). 
Specifical y you advised you were seeking access to “documentation in relation to proposed 
and actual works undertaken on Toms Road, Tawonga, Alpine Shire, specifical y in relation to 
infrastructure within the road reserve.  Specific documentation requested includes: 
•  Documentation and communication outlining the issues, complaints and 
proposed solutions to non-council infrastructure within the road reserve for the 
period 2000-2019.  
•  Safety reports and site reviews concerning Toms Road, Tawonga for the period 
2000-2019.  
•  The chain of Council approval for works undertaken on Toms Road, Tawonga on 
14 February 2019, including permits, licences and condition reports.  
•  Formal communication to impacted land owners regarding works undertaken on 
Toms Road, Tawonga on 14 February 2019.  
•  Safety reports and engineering reports pertaining to proposed future works along 
Toms Road, Tawonga.” 
Valid request 
Section 17 of the FOI Act requires al  of the fol owing requirements to be met before a 
request can be considered valid: 
(1) A person who wishes to obtain access to a document of an agency or an official 
document of a Minister shal  make a request in writing to the agency or Minister as 
the case requires for access to the document. 
(2) A request shal  provide such information concerning the document as is 
reasonably necessary to enable a responsible officer of the agency, or the Minister, 
as the case may be, to identify the document. 
(2A) A request must be accompanied by a fee of 2 fee units. 
(2B) An application fee may be waived or reduced, whether or not the fee has been 
paid, if the payment of the fee would cause hardship to the applicant.
    Alpine Shire Council 
    P.O. Box 139  
   P: (03) 5755 0555 
  E: [Alpine Shire Council request email] 
    ABN 14 821 390 281 
    Great Alpine Road  
   F: (03) 5755 1811 
  W: www.alpineshire.vic.gov.au  
 
    BRIGHT  VIC  3741 
 
 

 
Application fee 
As identified on the previous page, section 17(2A) of the FOI Act requires that an application 
fee of 2 fee units ($28.90) accompanies a request for access to documents.  As this fee has 
not been paid, your application cannot be processed until payment, or proof of hardship 
(such as a Centrelink concession card), is received.   
Payment may be made either by submitting a cheque in the mail, or by phoning Council’s 
customer service team during office hours on 03 5755 0555 to pay by credit card over the 
phone.   
The statutory decision period wil  commence on the date your FOI application becomes valid 
in accordance with section 17. 
Clarification of request 
Section 13 of the Act sets out the right of access, which is a right to obtain access to a 
document of an agency other than an exempt document.  That is, a request must be for 
documents and not just information as such. 
As it presently stands, aspects of your request are unclear and need to be clarified. 
I draw your attention to section 17(2) of the Act, which states that a request shal  provide 
such information concerning the document as is reasonably  necessary to identify the 
document.  In accordance with s17(4) of the Act, I invite you to consult with me to discuss 
how your request could be amended so that it is in a form that can be processed.   
In order to assist you, I make the fol owing specific comments in response to your request:   
1.  “The chain of Council approval for works undertaken on Toms Road, Tawonga on 
14 February 2019, including permits, licences and condition reports.” 
a.  A “chain of Council approval” is not a document that Council is able to search for.  
Please clarify whether you wish to search for permits, licences and condition 
reports regarding works undertaken on Toms Road, Tawonga on 14 February 
2019?  Alternatively, please clarify the documents you seek for this item. 
2.  “Safety reports and site reviews concerning Toms Road, Tawonga for the period 2000-
2019” and “Safety reports and engineering reports pertaining to proposed future 
works along Toms Road, Tawonga”. 
a.  These items are very similar – please confirm that you are seeking any safety 
reports, site reviews or engineering reports dated from 2000 onwards?  
Alternatively if you wish Council to treat these items separately, please advise. 
3.  You have requested documents dated between 2000-2019 – a twenty year period. 
a.  Please note that the considerable date range you have requested may require a 
large amount of search time and potential access charges for documents.  You 
may wish to consider reducing the length of time you require documents, if this is 
of concern to you.   
Please contact me at [email address] or by phone on 03 5755 0555 to discuss this 
matter.  Alternatively, you may wish to submit an amended request to clarify the issues raised 
above. 
 

Until your request is made in the manner required by section 17 of the Act, it cannot be 
processed and the time period within which a decision must be made has not commenced. 
Form of access 
Sections 28-38A of the FOI Act detail exemptions that apply to documents sought under the 
Act, including exemptions for documents affecting personal privacy, documents relating to 
material obtained in confidence, internal working documents, and council documents.   
Please advise if you consent to personal information and other exempt material being 
removed from the documents (where applicable).  If you do not agree to have personal and 
other exempt or irrelevant material removed from a document, an entire document may be 
exempt from release. 
Access charges 
In addition to the application fee, once a formal decision regarding access to the documents 
has been made, access charges wil  also be payable prior to Council releasing documents to 
you.   
Once you have clarified the terms of the request, if Council believes that the access charges 
are likely to exceed $50, Council wil  provide you with details of those charges, and you wil  
be required to pay a deposit.  Access charges are set out by the Freedom of Information 
(Access Charges) Regulations 2014 [Vic].  Please note that should a deposit be required, the 
time by which Council must make a decision re-starts from the date that a deposit is paid 
(received by Council). 
Schedule of charges 
Charge 
Defined by Regulations ($ in 2018/19) 
Search charges 
1.5 fee units per hour or part of an hour ($21.70 per 
hour)
 
Supervision of inspection of 
1·5 fee units per hour (to be calculated per quarter 
documents 
hour or part of a quarter hour) ($5.425 per quarter 
hour)
 
Black and white photocopying 
$0.20 per A4 page 
charges 
Charge for providing copy of 
The reasonable costs incurred by the agency in 
documents in accordance with s19 
providing the copy 
of the Act (electronic documents) 
Consultation 
If the documents identified as part of your request relate to the personal or business affairs 
of another person or organisation (a third party), Council is required to consult with that third 
party to obtain their views about the potential release of documents.  Consultation also 
extends the time in which Council must make a decision from 30 days to 45 days from the 
date on which your request becomes valid. 
 
 

Please advise whether you give Council permission to reveal your name as the FOI applicant.  
While not a requirement of the FOI Act, this can often expedite the consultation process if the 
third parties are aware to whom their personal or business information is being released. 
 
Feel free to contact me at [email address] or by phone on 03 5755 0555 to discuss 
your application.  As previously advised, Council cannot commence processing your request 
until  the application fee is paid, and the clarification points have been confirmed  in 
accordance with section 17. 
 
Yours sincerely, 
Original signed by 
B Schultz 
 
Belinda Schultz 
Governance Officer