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Wednesday, 15 March 2000
Page: 12914


Senator Faulkner asked the Minister representing the Minister for Veterans' Affairs, upon notice, on 21 September 1999:

(1) Of the requests for disclosure of information under the Freedom of Information Act dealt with by the department, or any agency in the portfolio, since 3 March 1996, how many requests have been made by: (a) a member of the House of Representatives; or (b) a member of the Senate.

(2) Of the cases relevant to (a) and (b) in (1), how many requests regarding access were: (a) partially successful; or (b) refused.

Of the cases relevant to (a) and (b) in (1), how many requests regarding charges were: (a) partially successful; or (b) refused.

Of the cases relevant to (2) and (3), how many of the department's or agency's written reasons for decision used, as grounds for refusal under the Act, a reference to members of Parliament having access to parliamentary processes to seek information from departments.

Is the department, or any agency in the portfolio, aware of any provision contained in legislation, or departmental guidelines, or practice where the applicant's employment provision can be, or has been, used as grounds for refusing access to documents and/or refusing to waive charges, other than that set out in (4).


Senator Newman (Minster for Family and Community Services and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Status of Women) —The Minister for Veterans' Affairs has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

(1)(a) One (Department of Veterans' Affairs)

(b) Nil

The other agencies in the portfolio have not received any requests from a member of the House of Representatives or a member of the Senate.

(2)(a) Nil

(b) Nil

(3)(a) Nil

(b) Nil

(4) Not applicable

(5) No