Annual Report on the Access to Information Act for the period ending March 31, 2014
4. Complaints and Judicial Review
Individuals who are not satisfied with the processing of their access to information request can file a complaint with the Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada (OIC).
The OIC received no complaints against Elections Canada in 2013–2014, but closed four outstanding complaints from 2012–2013. These related to whether Elections Canada had applied all exemptions correctly or provided all records responsive to the request.
The OIC determined that two complaints were well founded. These were resolved without the OIC making formal recommendations, once Elections Canada released additional information to the requesters.
Another similar complaint was not well founded. The OIC determined that Elections Canada had properly invoked litigation privilege to exempt records involved in a matter before the Supreme Court of Canada. Elections Canada disclosed the records during the 2013–2014 reporting period, following the conclusion of court proceedings.
One complaint was settled in the course of investigation. Elections Canada agreed to exercise the discretion of section 16.3 and reprocess the records. It also agreed to issue partial responses in order to expedite the release of information to the requester.
The OIC has not yet issued a finding on a complaint outstanding from 2011–2012. At issue is whether Elections Canada should provide its political contributions and expenses database in an alternative format to the version published online. Originally, this request was excluded under paragraph 68(a).
No judicial reviews were reported to Elections Canada in 2013–2014.