Freedom of Information (FOI)

The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act, 2000 entitles anybody to ask a public authority in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, including Government Departments, for any recorded information that they keep. A list of organisations covered by the Act is available at  www.direct.gov.uk/en/Governmentcitizensandrights/Yourrightsandresponsibilities/DG_4003239

This Act will give us all greater access to information about how decisions are taken in government and how public services are developed and delivered.


The FOI Act operates alongside the Data Protection Act, which allows people to access information about themselves (e.g. personnel records, or information held by credit reference agencies) and the Environmental Information Regulations, which give people access to information about the environment. For more information please call Customer Services on 01664 502502 or email customerservices@melton.gov.uk.  Telephone calls can be made from 9 am to 5 pm.


How to ask for information

All requests for information from Melton Borough Council must be made in writing (e.g. letter, fax, email). You must clearly state what information you are requesting and supply your name and address. You do not need to say why you want the information. It would also be helpful if the request could clearly state that it is being made under the FOI Act.


Publication Scheme
All public authorities covered by the Freedom of Information Act have a Publication Scheme. For a copy click on the link, or request a copy from our Customer Services.


The scheme lists the information which the Council routinely makes available, and states whether you will have to pay for that information. Check the Scheme to see if the information you want has already been published. This could save you - and the Council - time and money.  A copy of the Publication List can be viewed here.


What information can be requested?

You can ask to have any recorded information. This could be in the form of e-mails, notebooks, videos, or tapes.


When will the information be provided?

In most cases, the Council must respond to your request within 20 days of receiving it and, if we cannot, we will explain why and let you know when you will receive a reply.


Can a request be declined?

Melton Borough Council will provide you with the information unless there is a good reason for not doing so (e.g. your request relates to someone else's personal details). We must provide you with a reason for declining your request. If you do not find the reason persuasive, you can ask us to review our decision, and if your request is still declined you can ask the Information Commissioner's office to review that decision. The Information Commissioner's office is an independent body that enforces the FOI Act, the Data Protection Act and the Environmental Information Regulations. For more information visit the Information Commissioner's website.


In what format can the information be requested?


You can say in what format you would prefer to receive the information (e.g. on paper or electronically). You can discuss these formats with us. In some cases, e.g. for people with disabilities, there may be entitlement to a particular format; again you can discuss this with us.


How much will a request cost? 


A lot of information may be supplied free of charge. However, sometimes you may have to pay a fee, either to cover administration costs, or to pay photocopying or postage costs, or because of the expense involved in finding and supplying the information. We will tell you in advance if a fee will apply.


How to find out more


For more information on Freedom of Information you can visit the Information Commissioner's website at http://www.ico.gov.uk/.


Making a complaint

If you have a complaint about Freedom of Information or Environmental Information Regulations you should contact FOI/EIR Complaints Resolution at the Information Commissioner's Office.




To view quarterly monitoring data for foi requests click on Quarterly Monitoring Data.  To view the FOI presentational tables click here.


FOI Disclosure Log


Public authorities covered by the Freedom of Information Act are encouraged by the Information Commissioner’s Office to publish a Disclosure Log, showing the requests processed by the authority. Melton Borough Council’s Disclosure Log entries are available at FOI Disclosure Log.