Lourigan and Brisbane City Council

Application number:
1995 L0001
Decision date:
Tuesday, May 14, 1996

Lourigan and Brisbane City Council
(1995 L0001, 14 May 1996) 

In this 'reverse FOI' case, the Information Commissioner affirmed the decision of the Council that the initial access applicant should have access to a complaint made by Mr Lourigan about the initial access applicant (a fellow employee of the Council).  The letter had been disclosed by the Council to the initial access applicant, in the course of dealing with the complaint. 

The Information Commissioner found that the letter was not exempt under s.46(1)(a) or s.46(1)(b), as it was no longer confidential information vis-a-vis the initial access applicant (although the Information Commissioner noted that the exemptions might still be available in the case of a different applicant). 

Applying the principles set out in Pemberton and The University of Queensland (1994) 2 QAR 293, the Information Commissioner determined that the letter was not exempt under s.40(c) (substantial adverse effect on management or assessment of agency personnel), as public interest considerations favoured disclosure to the initial access applicant.