FLT and Queensland Transport
(210376, 3 January 2008)
Section 42(1)(b) Matter relating to law enforcement or public safety
The applicant sought access to letters of concern (Matter in Issue) provided to Queensland Transport (QT) about her ability to drive due to a medical condition. On the basis of the information contained in the Matter in Issue, the applicant was issued a show cause notice by QT. The applicant failed to respond to this notice and as a consequence QT revoked her applicant’s driver’s licence.
Acting Information Commissioner Rangihaeata decided that the Matter in Issue was exempt under section 42(1)(b) of the FOI Act because disclosure of the Matter in Issue would disclose a confidential source who had provided information in relation to the enforcement or administration of the Transport Operations (Road Use Management) Act 1995 (Qld) and the Transport Operations (Road Use Management – Driver Licensing) Regulation 1999 (Qld).
Section 46(1)(b) Matter communicated in confidence
QT also claimed that that the Matter in Issue consisted of information communicated in confidence.
Acting Information Commissioner Rangihaeata found that the Matter in Issue was of a confidential nature and had been communicated by the third parties to QT under an implied mutual understanding that their identities would remain confidential. Drawing on the principles stated in McCann and Queensland Police Service (1997) 4 QAR 30, Acting Information Commissioner Rangihaeata decided that the Matter in Issue could reasonably be expected to prejudice the future supply of similar information to QT.
In her examination of the public interest balancing test, Acting Information Commissioner Rangihaeata found that in this instance, the public interest considerations favouring non-disclosure were of a greater weight than those favouring disclosure. On this basis the Matter in Issue also qualified for exemption under section 46(1)(b) of the FOI Act.