19 April 2021: OIA response | Charging fees for Official Information Act (OIA) requests

19 April 2021 

Dear [name and contact details withheld] 

REQUEST FOR INFORMATION 

Thank you for your request dated 30 March 2021 under the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA) for information relating to charging fees for OIA requests. You requested:

  1. Does your organisation have a policy or guidelines in relation to charging requestors for supplying information under the Official Information Act 1982?
  2. If yes, please supply a written copy of the policy/guideline, including grounds for seeking costs for supplying information, charges for photocopying, scanning or other copying of information and the hourly rate for staff time in compiling requests?
  3. If not, what does your organisation charge for photocopying, scanning or other copying of information and what is the hourly rate for staff time in compiling requests?

In the 12 months from 01 January 2020 to December 31, 2020: 

  1. How many requests for information under the Official Information Act did your organisation receive?
  2. Of these, in how many was the requestor advised that they would incur charges for copying and staff time, or any other reason?
  3. In how many of these, did the requestor pay the required charge for supplying of information?
  4. In total, how much did your organisation receive in payments for supplying information under the OIA?
  5. What were the largest 10 amounts paid by requestors in charges for fulfilling OIA requests?

Charging fees for the supply of official information

PHARMAC does not currently have its own defined policy or guidelines for charging fees for the supply of information in response to requests made under the OIA. 

On occasion, PHARMAC considers whether charging for the supply of information in response to an OIA request would be reasonable and appropriate. PHARMAC refers to the Ministry of Justice guidelines for charging for official information, including recommended hourly rates for staff time. 

Charging for photocopying, scanning and other copying of information

PHARMAC does not currently have a policy or fixed fee structure for charging for photocopying, scanning or other copying of information. Generally, unless otherwise requested, we provide information in response to OIA requests in digital form (for example, PDF). Requests for information to be provided in hard copy (that is, printed) are assessed on a case-by-case basis. 

Requests received from 1 January 2020 to 31 December 2020

PHARMAC reports OIA statistics to the State Services Commissioner every six months.

  • PHARMAC reported 88 OIA responses issued between 1 January to 30 June 2020
  • PHARMAC reported 99 OIA responses issued between 1 July to 31 December 2020

Of the 187 OIA responses issued in the calendar year of 2020, none were advised that they would incur charges for the supply of information requested. PHARMAC did not receive any payments for the supply of official information in 2020. 

Government agency OIA statistics can be found on the Public Service Commission website: https://www.publicservice.govt.nz/resources/official-information-statistics/(external link)

We trust that this information answers your queries. We are making our information more freely available, so we will now publish selected OIA responses (excluding personal details) on our website. Please get in touch with us if you have any questions about this.

Yours sincerely

Rachel Read
Manager, Policy and Government Services