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Access to Government Information - Public Consultation Extended 18 January 2007

CHIEF Minister Tony Brown MHK has announced an extension to the public consultation exercise on proposals to strengthen the public’s right of access to Government information.

The consultation on Access to Government Information legislation, launched on November 20, 2006, was due to close on January 31 this year but will now end on February 28.

Mr Brown explained:

‘There has been a limited response so far to the consultation, possibly because it has coincided with the House of Keys general election and the Christmas holiday period. The extension will allow people more time to respond on this vitally important issue.’

It is proposed that the existing Code of Practice on Access to Government Information should be revised, updated and be made legally binding through the introduction of an Access to Information Bill.

The consultation is seeking views on relevant issues such as the categories of information exempt from disclosure, the status of Council of Ministers minutes, and whether the law should apply to local as well as central government.

The consultation document is available from the Tynwald Library priced £2 each, or free online at www.gov.im/cso.

Responses to the consultation, clearly marked ‘Access to Government Information – Public Consultation’ should be submitted in writing before February 28, 2007 to the Chief Secretary’s Office, Government Office, Buck’s Road, Douglas, Isle of Man IM1 3PG or to enquiries.cso@gov.im

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