Guide to FOIP-Chapter 4

Office of the Saskatchewan Information and Privacy Commissioner. Guide to FOIP, Chapter 4, Exemptions from the Right of Access. Updated 8 April 2024. 99 Briefing Binders were being withheld in full from the applicant. Seven of the government institutions cited subsection 16(1)(a), one cited subsection 16(1)(b) and two cited subsection 16(1) of FOIP. The Transition Briefing Binders varied between each government institution with the smallest being 16 pages and the largest being 262 pages. The government institutions asserted that the Transition Briefing Binders were not only a set of briefing notes but also a record that identified the issues, policies and directions of priority for the new ministers. Upon review, the Commissioner found that some portions of the Transition Briefing Binders were appropriately withheld under subsection 16(1) of FOIP. The Commissioner also found that some portions contained personal information pursuant to subsection 24(1) of FOIP. However, the Commissioner also found that some portions were publicly available or had been publicly revealed. For example, organizational charts, some financial information, information on mandates and missions of the government institutions. For portions that were already publicly available or already publicly revealed, the Commissioner found that subsection 16(1) of FOIP did not apply. Subsection 16(1)(a) Cabinet documents 16(1) A head shall refuse to give access to a record that discloses a confidence of the Executive Council, including: (a) records created to present advice, proposals, recommendations, analyses or policy options to the Executive Council or any of its committees; … (2) Subject to section 30, a head shall not refuse to give access pursuant to subsection (1) to a record where: (a) the record has been in existence for more than 25 years; or (b) consent to access is given by: (i) the President of the Executive Council for which, or with respect to which, the record has been prepared; or (ii) in the absence or inability to act of the President, by the next senior member of the Executive Council who is present and able to act. Subsection 16(1)(a) of FOIP is a mandatory class-based exemption. It permits refusal of access in situations where release of a record could disclose a confidence of Cabinet including records created to present advice, proposals, recommendations, analyses, or policy options to Cabinet or any of its committees.