“…Most pieces of legislation warrant review and possible updating every generation.
Few are as worthy of attention right now as the Official Information Act.
Since its introduction in 1982, it has been a strong driver of transparency and accountability.
This has prompted not only a heightened demand for information but greater attention to instances where the act’s aim has been thwarted.
In that context, the Law Commission review of the legislation, entitled The Public’s Right to Know, could hardly be more timely.
Happily, most of its recommendations also strike the right note.
Perhaps the most far-reaching suggestion is that all publicly funded agencies, institutions or government-related offices should be subject to official information requests.
This would encompass the likes of courts, universities, school boards of trustees, and Parliamentary Service administrative matters.
The inner workings of these would become as well known as those of central and inner government.
This expanded purview rests on the concept that accountability and transparency should be part and parcel of public funding and function…”
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