Monday, November 29, 2004

Commencement Order for FOI Signed/ Revised Section 45 CoP

Thanks to Andrew for pointing these out:

At the Law for Journalists Conference, 26th Nov. Lord Falconer stated: "This morning, I signed the Commencement Order which officially brings the Freedom of Information Act fully into force on 1 January 2005 - now barely a month away."

He also mentions: "Today, as well as signing the implementation order, my Department is publishing a revised Statutory Code of Practice showing what public authorities must do to make a success of the Act. (this now at available online)My Department has also established a Central Clearing House to assist officials in dealing with complex requests for information. This Clearing House will act as an expert advice centre from which advice on the appropriate application of these access regimes can be sought by officials in central government departments. It will be responsive to emerging case law as our practical experience develops."

The clearing house for central government is an interesting development which may improve consitentcy and case law development but could aslo be a system for monitoring the "dangerous" cases that require high level media management. See the example from Canadain research by Prof. Al Roberts from Univ of Syracuse that I have mentioned previously (see

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