Legislation amendment clarifies reporting requirements

July 10, 2024 - 2:41pm

Queensland public sector agencies should be aware of recent amendments to legislation that aim to clarify annual statistical reporting.

The Information Commissioner decided in Poyton and Department of Education [2023] QICmr 13 (Poyton) that the processing period commences when an access or amendment application arrives, whether or not it is valid.

At that time it was unclear whether Poyton would impact the annual reporting required under the Right to Information Regulation 2009 (RTI Regulation) and Information Privacy Regulation 2009 (IP Regulation). Specifically, whether Poyton would require agencies and Ministers to report all applications received or only valid applications received.

The Information Privacy and Other Legislation Amendment Regulation 2024 has amended section 8(1)(a) of the RTI Regulation and section 6(1)(a) of the IP Regulation to specify that agencies and Ministers are only required to report on the number of valid access and amendment applications received.

A related change is the introduction of the concept of valid application day and clarification that the processing period does not begin until an application is compliant with all requirements. This change will come into effect on 1 July 2025 when the bulk of changes in the Information Privacy and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2023commence. More extensive consideration of the RTI Regulation is also expected at some point.