Freedom of Information

As a member of the public, you have the right to request any information held in custody or the control of Haldimand County. Under the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (the Act):

  • Any member of the public may request to view or obtain copies of general records and information held by the County;
  • Individuals may request to view, copy or correct any personal information about them that may be held by the County;
  • The County must protect privacy as outlined in the Act.

The Act also describes circumstances where information may be withheld from release.

Freedom of Information logo

If you have questions regarding the freedom of information process, please contact the FOI Coordinator at FOI@haldimandcounty.on.ca or by phone at 905-318-5932, extension 6362.

We are doing business differently in an effort to move towards greater transparency and accountability by improving public access to County records and data. Before submitting a formal request:

  1. Search the website to see if the information is already available;
  2. Search Open Data to review any holdings which have already been published;
  3. Contact the department as staff can often provide the information without a freedom of information request, saving you time and money;
  4. Many County program areas can provide records to you through an informal process. For examples of records available through routine disclosure, take a look at the County’s User Fees and Charges By-law and its amendments. Building records related to property survey’s, plans, drawings, permits, engineering reports, orders and zoning verifications related to a specific property can be requested through the County’s Building Controls and By-law Division by completing and submitting the Routine Disclosure for Building Records Request Form. Completed forms should be returned to the attention of the Manager, Building & By-law Enforcement, 282 Argyle Street South, Caledonia, ON  N3W 1K8.

The Personal Health Information Protection Act (PHIPA) applies to municipal services that involve the collection of Personal Health Information. The Act defines Personal Health Information as any form of identifying information about an individual’s physical or mental health. The Act’s purposes are:

  • To establish rules for the collection and disclosure of Personal Health Information;
  • To protect the privacy of personal health information, and;
  • To provide individuals with the right to access and to correct or amend their personal health information subject to limited and specific exemptions.

Personal Health Information means identifying information about an individual in oral or recorded form. This may include:

  • Health record & health history;
  • Provision of health care;
  • Lab results;
  • Healthcare provider;
  • Healthcare payments or eligibility for health care;
  • Donation of any body part or bodily substance of the individual or is derived from the testing or examination of any such body part or bodily substance;
  • Health Card Number;
  • Substitute Decision-Maker.

Under PHIPA Haldimand County has two Health Information Custodians. They include:

  • Administrator, Grandview Lodge;
  • Manager, Emergency Services / Fire Chief.

Health Information Custodians are responsible to ensure that personal health information is collected, used, stored and shared in a manner that protects the confidentiality of that information, and the privacy of individuals with respect to that information, while facilitating the effective provision of health care.

When utilized with other security measures, video surveillance is an effective means of ensuring the security and safety of County facilities, the individuals who use them, and the assets housed within them. Video surveillance cameras are found in various County locations including Libraries, Grandview Lodge, Facilities and Parks as well as Waste Water Treatment Facilities. Under the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, the recorded image of an individual is considered personal information.

The personal information collected by the use of the County’s video surveillance cameras is collected under the authority of the Municipal Act and the County’s Security Video Surveillance Systems Policy 2014-03. The information is used for the purpose of public safety, aiding the risk management insurance program and reducing crime at County facilities.

Individuals wishing to access a recording from one of the County’s surveillance cameras may do so through the Freedom of Information request process as outlined above.

If you would like to submit a formal request, complete the FOI Request Form or write a letter stating you are requesting information under MFIPPA or PHIPA and bring it to any county office along with the required $5 application fee. Include as much detail as possible so we can process your request quickly and correctly. Remember to include your contact information so we can communicate with you about your request.

Usually a request is processed within 30 days.

The following fees may be charged in response to requests for information under MFIPPA.

  • Application fee: $5 to be paid when you submit your request.
  • Search time: $7.50 for each 15 minutes required to search and retrieve records.
  • Record preparation: $7.50 for each 15 minutes required to prepare records for release.
  • Photocopying: $0.20 per page.
  • Computer programming: $15 for each 15 minutes needed to develop a program to retrieve information.
  • CDs: $10 for each CD.

You will be given a fee estimate if the fees are likely to be more than $25. If the estimate of fees is $100 or more, you may have to pay a 50 per cent deposit. Fees may be paid by cash, money order, certified cheque (payable to Haldimand County), debit card, Visa, or MasterCard.

If you are not satisfied with the town’s response to your request, you may appeal the town’s decision to the Information and Privacy Commissioner. This commissioner is appointed by the Provincial Legislature and is independent of any government or public institution. The commissioner may be contacted at:

Information and Privacy Commissioner/Ontario
2 Bloor Street East
Suite 1400
Toronto, Ontario M4W 1A8
Phone: 1-800-387-0073

There is a $10 appeal fee for requests related to accessing or correcting your personal information. There is a $25 appeal fee for requests related to accessing general records. Appeal fees may be paid by cheque or money order made payable to the Minister of Finance.

For more information, contact the Information and Privacy Commissioner.

X
X
X