Vacancy notices for National Judicial Registrar positions

Response to this request is long overdue. By law, under all circumstances, Federal Court of Australia should have responded by now (details). You can complain by requesting an internal review.

Dear Federal Court of Australia,

Under the FOI Act I request:

a) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Susan O'Connor applied for and came to fill;
b) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Phillip Allaway applied for and came to fill;
c) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Matthew Benter applied for and came to fill;
d) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Rupert Burns applied for and came to fill;
e) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Claire Gitsham applied for and came to fill;
f) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that David Ryan applied for and came to fill; and
g) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Tuan Van Le applied for and was came to fill.

Yours faithfully,

Allan

External FOI, Federal Court of Australia

1 Attachment

OFFICIAL
Dear Allan

Please find attached correspondence from the Federal Court of Australia.

Kind regards

FOI Officer
Federal Court of Australia

show quoted sections

External FOI, Federal Court of Australia

1 Attachment

OFFICIAL
Dear Allan

Please find attached correspondence from the Federal Court of Australia.

Kind regards

FOI Officer
Federal Court of Australia

show quoted sections

Dear Ms Hammerton Cole,

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

I am writing to request an internal review of Federal Court of Australia's handling of my FOI request 'Vacancy notices for National Judicial Registrar positions'.

You have not provided the documents that I requested in my FOI request.

In your decision you state:

"The four (4) documents to which I have decided to grant you access are listed below:

1. Gazette Notice - Senior National Judicial Registrar;
2. Gazette Notice - National Judicial Registrar & District Registrar;
3. Gazette Notice - Judicial Registrar; and
4. Gazette Notice - Deputy District Registrar."

The Gazette Notices make clear that:

a) the Senior National Judicial Registrar role is classified as the SES Band 2 level;
b) the Judicial Registrar role is classified at the Executive Level 2 level;
c) the National Judicial Registrar & District Registrar role is classified at the SES Band 1 level.
d) the Deputy District Registrar role is classified at the Executive Level 2 level.

In relation to (c), the vacancy notice you have directed me to is identical to the vacancy notices for the roles that Murray Belcher, Russell Trott and Tim Luxton were promoted to. Accordingly, that vacancy notice has no application to Susan O'Connor, Phillip Allaway, Matthew Benter, Rupert Burns, Claire Gitsham, David Ryan and Tuan Van Le.

Nor does (a) apply to Susan O'Connor, Phillip Allaway, Matthew Benter, Rupert Burns, Claire Gitsham, David Ryan and Tuan Van Le because not one of these officers is listed as an SES Band 2 employee in the list of SES employees set out in PA 2925-06/9 of the Federal Court's disclosure log.

Also, the position descriptions for the "National Judicial Registrar" roles provide, contrary to subrule 9(5) of the Public Service Classification Rules 2000, that the roles are classified across both the EL2 and SES1 classification bands (i.e. a broadband).

It is clear that a National Judicial Registrar is not a Judicial Registrar because National Judicial Registrars "perform a leadership role for Judicial Registrar ... at the local and national level".

Not one of these documents addresses my FOI request.

I requested the following documents:

a) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Susan O'Connor applied for and came to fill;
b) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Phillip Allaway applied for and came to fill;
c) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Matthew Benter applied for and came to fill;
d) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Rupert Burns applied for and came to fill;
e) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Claire Gitsham applied for and came to fill;
f) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that David Ryan applied for and came to fill; and
g) the vacancy notice for the National Judicial Registrar role in the Federal Court that Tuan Van Le applied for and was came to fill.

Please provide the documents that I requested in my FOI request. If the relevant vacancy notification do not exist (which would be problematic for many reasons), then you must refuse access under s 24A of the FOI Act.

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

Yours faithfully,

Allan

External FOI, Federal Court of Australia

OFFICIAL
Dear Allan

I acknowledge receipt of your request below for an internal review of the decision made by Registrar Hammerton Cole on behalf of the Federal Court of Australia and dated 30 May 2022.

Kind regards

FOI Officer
Federal Court of Australia

show quoted sections

External FOI, Federal Court of Australia

1 Attachment

OFFICIAL
Dear Allan

Please find attached correspondence from the Federal Court of Australia.

Kind regards,

FOI Officer
Federal Court of Australia

show quoted sections

Federal Court of Australia

 
 
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Federal Court of Australia

1 Attachment

Our reference: MR22/01143

 

By email: [FOI #8818 email]

Receipt of your IC review application  

Thank you for your application for Information Commissioner Review (IC
review).

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) is
considering your application.

If you wish to advise the OAIC of any changes to your circumstances,
including your contact details or if your FOI request has been resolved,
please write to [email address] and quote MR22/01143.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Freedom of Information Regulatory Group

Office of the Australian Information Commissioner

 

 

 

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Allan left an annotation ()

I made a request in exactly the same terms as part 1 of Aiofe's FOI request for vacancy notices:

https://www.righttoknow.org.au/request/m...

Part 1 of Aiofe's FOI request was:

"Under the FOI Act I request access to the following documents:

1. Vacancy notifications published in the Public Service Gazette or elsewhere

a) the vacancy notification for the National Judicial Registrar role that Phillip Allaway applied for and was selected to fill;
b) the vacancy notification for the National Judicial Registrar role that Matthew Benter applied for and was selected to fill;
c) the vacancy notification for the National Judicial Registrar role that Rupert Burns applied for and was selected to fill;
d) the vacancy notification for the National Judicial Registrar role that Claire Gitsham applied for and was selected to fill;
e) the vacancy notification for the National Judicial Registrar role that Susan O'Connor applied for and was selected to fill;
f) the vacancy notification for the National Judicial Registrar role that David Ryan applied for and was selected to fill;
g) the vacancy notification for the National Judicial Registrar role that Tuan Van Le applied for and was selected to fill."

When Claire Hammerton Cole made her original decision, I sought review because the documents that she furnished were not documents that were covered by the terms of my FOI request. They are the same documents that she furnished to Aiofe and which Aiofe sought review for because they were not covered by the terms of her FOI request (https://www.righttoknow.org.au/request/m...). Claire Hammerton Cole said to AIofe:

"The table below lists those documents identified, in accordance with the relevant paragraphs
of your request.

Paragraph (1)

Gazette Notice – Senior National Judicial Registrar
Gazette Notice – National Judicial Registrar & District Registrar
Gazette Notice – Judicial Registrar
Gazette Notice – Deputy District Registrar ..."

On internal review of the FOI request that Aiofe made, Nicola Colbran, National Judicial Registrar & District Registrar, set aside Ms Hammerton Cole's decision (https://www.righttoknow.org.au/request/m...). Nicola Colbran said:

"Decision on Internal Review

Documents in item (1) of the FOI request

The decision dated 30 June 2022 identified four documents within the scope of your request. However, I am of the view that the documents identified are not within scope as they do not relate to both the role the person applied for and that they were selected to fill. I am satisfied that all reasonable steps have been taken to find the documents you have requested, but the documents cannot be found or do not exist (see s 24A(1) of the FOI Act). I therefore refuse your access request."

On internal review of my identically worded FOI request, Scott Tredwell, the General Counsel of the Federal Court, said:

"Decision on review

I am satisfied that the decision maker has provided you access to all documents within the scope of your FOI request.

Reasons for Decision

In relation to your FOI request, the searches conducted by the Court found four documents which are identified clearly within the FOI decision. I will not specifically identify each of those documents again here but will refer to them collectively as the recruitment documents.

As identified above, I am satisfied that the searches undertaken were thorough and comprehensive. I do not believe any further reasonable search or enquiry could find additional documents within the scope of your request.

In your review request, you assert, in respect of the FOI decision and the documents provided, that the decision maker has “not provided the documents that I requested in my FOI request”. THIS IS SIMPLY NOT CORRECT (my emphasis). Furthermore, it is not my role as an FOI internal reviewer to provide advice addressing the perceived discrepancies between the documents for which access was granted and those you believe you should have gained access to, or how the specific recruitment was undertaken."

Well, if my contentions are "simply not correct", why is it that Nicola Colbran has set aside Claire Hammerton Cole's decision in respect of the vacancy notices that she provided to Aiofe and stated that the documents do not exist?

How can the documents not exist (see Nicola Colbran's internal review decision) and exist, and be the very documents that Nicola Colbran said were not covered by the identically worded FOI request that Aiofe made for the vacancy notices? It's logically impossible. Either Scott Tredwell has stated the truth or Nicola Colbran has stated the truth, but both cannot have stated the truth.

OAIC - FOI DR,

5 Attachments

Our reference: MR22/01143

Agency reference: N/A

Mr Allan Lark
By email: [1][FOI #8818 email]

Dear Mr Lark

Thank you for your application for review. We have today informed the
Federal Court of Australia that the Information Commissioner will
undertake an IC review and requested information to assist with
progressing the review.

We will provide you with an update when we have heard from the Federal
Court of Australia.

 

 

Kind regards

 

Jennifer Zhou

 

[2][IMG]   Intake and Early Resolution Team

Freedom of Information Regulatory Group

Office of the Australian Information
Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001  |
 [3]oaic.gov.au

1300 363 992 [4][email address]
[5][IMG] | [6][IMG] | [7][IMG] |   [8]Subscribe to OAICnet newsletter

 

 

 

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Dear Ms Zhou,

Thank you.

As you can see, there are logical inconsistencies between responses to identically worded requests
provided to Aiofe and to me by two decision makers in the Federal Court (Nicola Colbran, the National Judicial Registrar and District Registrar of South Australia, and Scott Tredwell, the General Counsel of the Federal Court). I hope to get some clarity on the matter, particularly because, for the reasons noted, Ms Hammerton Cole has not provided me with documents that fall within the scope of my FOI request.

Yours sincerely,

Allan

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