Impact of protracted bargaining on ATO employee morale

Ato Nduvho made this Freedom of Information request to Australian Taxation Office

The request was refused by Australian Taxation Office.

From: Ato Nduvho

Delivered

Dear Australian Taxation Office,

I understand negotiations for a new enterprise agreement for non-SES staff have progressed extremely slowly over the last 2 years.

As a taxpayer I am concerned any 'savings' from deliberate government delays are having a negative impact on employee morale which in turn would negatively impact the productivity of the ATO as a whole.

I am seeking the following documents in this FOI:

1. All documents which address, or mention, the impact of prolonged bargaining on employee morale. This includes all impact, whether actual, perceived, anticipated, or otherwise.

2. Documents which describe how employee morale has been measured over time, covering a period of at least the last 2 years.

3. All documents which detail the estimated productivity losses resulting from prolonged bargaining and/or decreased employee morale.

Yours faithfully,

Ato Nduvho

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From: FOI
Australian Taxation Office

Dear Ato Nduvho
 
 
The ATO does not process FOI requests received via righttoknow.org.au.
Please send your FOI request direct to [1][ATO request email], or lodge via
paper form available at
[2]https://www.ato.gov.au/uploadedFiles/Con....
Alternatively, you can contact the ATO on 13 28 69 and ask for Freedom of
Information.
 
 
Regards,
FOI Team
 

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References

Visible links
1. mailto:[ATO request email]
2. https://www.ato.gov.au/uploadedFiles/Con...

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From: Ato Nduvho

Delivered

Dear FOI Team,

This is a valid request, made in accordance with the FOI Act.

The ATO cannot simply choose to ignore FOI requests that come through particular channels.

Indeed, the ATO does, in fact, respond to FOI requests made through the Right To Know website, as can be seen at the following link:

https://www.righttoknow.org.au/body/ato

Failure to process this request in accordance with the Act will result in due process being followed in accordance with the Act.

Yours sincerely,

Ato Nduvho

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From: Ato Nduvho

Delivered

Dear FOI,

Further to my previous email, I draw your attention to Sect 15 of the FOI Act which outlines the requirements for requests.

Relevantly, the Act states:

Requirements for request

(2) The request must:

(a) be in writing; and

(aa) state that the request is an application for the purposes of this Act; and

(b) provide such information concerning the document as is reasonably necessary to enable a responsible officer of the agency, or the Minister, to identify it; and

(c) give details of how notices under this Act may be sent to the applicant (for example, by providing an electronic address to which notices may be sent by electronic communication).

(2A) The request must be sent to the agency or Minister. The request may be sent in any of the following ways:

(a) delivery to an officer of the agency, or a member of the staff of the Minister, at the address of any central or regional office of the agency or Minister specified in a current telephone directory;

(b) postage by pre-paid post to an address mentioned in paragraph (a);

(c) sending by electronic communication to an electronic address specified by the agency or Minister.

This request satisfies the above criteria. If you disagree, please detail your reasons.

Please continue to process this request in accordance with the Act.

Yours sincerely,

Ato Nduvho

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From: Ato Nduvho

Delivered

Dear FOI,

Further to my previous email, the Australian Government Office of the Australian Information Commissioner's FOI Guidelines explicitly say that sites like Right To Know can be used to make FOI requests:

https://oaic.gov.au/freedom-of-informati...

"This requirement can be met by posting the request on a public website which forwards the request to a specified address of the agency or minister."

Accordingly I expect the ATO to respond to this FOI request in the usual manner.

Yours sincerely,

Ato Nduvho

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Daniel O'Connor left an annotation ()

At this point, it's likely the agency will simply try to ignore you.

I would suggest making a complaint as per https://www.oaic.gov.au/freedom-of-infor...

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From: Ato Nduvho

Delivered

Dear ATO,

With respect to this and my other FOI request, please advise if the ATO intends to fulfil the request via the Right to Know website.

If I do not hear from you by close of business 22 August 2016, I will take it that you refuse to fulfil the requests in accordance with the FOI Act, and will proceed with an OAIC complaint.

Yours sincerely,

Ato Nduvho

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From: Ato Nduvho

Delivered

Dear Australian Taxation Office,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Australian Taxation Office's handling of my FOI request 'Impact of protracted bargaining on ATO employee morale'.

The ATO has failed to process this request within the timeframes required by law. I do not accept there is a valid reason for your refusal to process this request solely on the grounds that it came to you via the Right to Know website.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.righttoknow.org.au/request/i...

Yours faithfully,

Ato Nduvho

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From: FOI
Australian Taxation Office

 
Dear Ato Nduvho,
 
The ATO does not process requests received via righttoknow.org.au.  Please
send your request directly to [1][ATO request email].  Alternatively, you can
contact the ATO on 13 28 69 and ask for Freedom of Information.
 
 
Regards
FOI Team
 
 

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References

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1. mailto:[ATO request email]

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From: Ato Nduvho

Delivered

Dear Australian Taxation Office,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Australian Taxation Office's handling of my FOI request 'ATO purported manipulation of phone system performance statistics'.

I encourage the department to stop being intentionally obstructive to the freedom of information in Australia. While this request is publicly visible on Right To Know, it has been emailed to you at your nominated email address. It is unacceptable to ignore emails from specific domains such as @righttoknow.org.au

The reasons you have given for denying Right To Know requests are not acceptable and defy credibility of a reasonable person. Inadequacies of the ATO in procedural matters are a matter for the ATO and should not inhibit access to information which is a public right.

Yours sincerely,

Ato Nduvho

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Ben Fairless left an annotation ()

The Information Commissioner has made a formal recommendation to the ATO to start processing to Freedom of Information requests made via Right to Know. More Information on this can be found here: https://www.openaustraliafoundation.org....

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Locutus Sum left an annotation ()

My comment is an addition to the comments by Mr. Fairless. I also make a specific suggestion.

Although the Australian Taxation Office wrote to the applicant to say that the Office would not process the application, something did happen. The thing that happened was that 30 days after the date when the application was lodged, section 15AC(3) of the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Cth) had the effect of making a "deemed decision" to refuse the request ... this is unless the Commissioner grants more time.

Because of the effect of the Act, I make the following suggestions to the applicant:
(1) Do not write to the Australian Taxation Office and complain that a decision on your request is "overdue". It is not. A deemed decision was made 30 days after you lodged the application.
(2) Instead, use this Right to Know page (or you can create a new request page) to write exactly the same request to the Australian Taxation Office. If you want to grumble, then you can always say (in the new request email) that you made the same request earlier on this-and-then date.

I make this suggestion because if you only write and complain that your request is "overdue", then after a delay, the Australian Taxation Office might (correctly) write back to you and say, "No it is not". Of course, the purpose of this would be to delay to process your request (because the office will now have suddenly a lot of requests) but it will still have the effect that you must lodge a new request. Therefore, you can lose nothing to use this Right to Know page to make a new request now! It will start the clock again.

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From: Ato Nduvho

Delivered

Dear ATO

This is a request for information under the FOI Act. I seek the following documents:

1. All documents which address, or mention, the impact of prolonged bargaining on employee morale. This includes all impact, whether actual, perceived, anticipated, or otherwise.

2. Documents which describe how employee morale has been measured over time, covering a period of at least the last 2 years.

3. All documents which detail the estimated productivity losses resulting from prolonged bargaining and/or decreased employee morale.

Yours faithfully,

Ato Nduvho

Link to this

From: FOI
Australian Taxation Office


Attachment Attachment.pdf
29K Download View as HTML


 
Dear FOI Applicant,
 
Please see the attachment.
 
 
 
Yours faithfully,
 
FOI Team
 
 

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From: FOI
Australian Taxation Office


Attachment RTK.pdf
33K Download View as HTML


 
Dear FOI Applicant,
 
 
Please see attachment.
 
 
 
Regards,
FOI Team
 

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Locutus Sum left an annotation ()

It is in fact not obvious on Right to Know what the status of this request is. The applicant has to look somewhere else for the information. If a person opens the reply from the ATO and also then looks at the link from the ATO, it is a link to a letter to the applicant. This is very strange because the ATO has published on its disclosure log information that is not about a disclosure. It is about a refusal!

The letter on the other site invites the applicant to respond to a s 24AB notice. This is very very strange.

Link to this

From: FOI
Australian Taxation Office


Attachment Notice.pdf
51K Download View as HTML


 
Dear FOI Applicant,
 
Please see attachment.
 
 
 
Yours faithfully
 
FOI Team
 
 

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Locutus Sum left an annotation ()

First the ATO pretended to serve a notice to the applicant but they did not bother to send the notice to him. Instead, they sent the notice to the ATO. Yes, they sent it to themselves. Now they do not get a reply from the applicant so they write another letter to the applicant to tell him that his request has been refused because he did not respond the the letter they sent to themselves. But do they send the access refusal decision to the applicant? No, they do not. Again, like silly children, they send the letter to themselves to tell themselves that they have refused the applicant's request.

This behavior is disgraceful. It is behavior than I am used to see only in dictatorships.

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