Request for details of 404 land covenants

Substantial collation or research
Legislation:
Official Information Act 1982
Section 18
Legislation display text:
Official Information Act 1982, s 18(f)
Agency:
Minister
Ombudsman:
Dame Beverley Wakem
Case number(s):
175763
Issue date:
Language:
English

Complaint about s 18(f) refusal resolved by release of other information

The Minister of Conservation refused the following request on grounds of substantial collation or research:

What type of agreements are the 404 conservation covenants that are recorded under section 77 of the Reserves Act 1977, and who are these agreements with?

The requester complained to the Ombudsman. The Ombudsman’s investigation revealed that the Land Register maintained by the Department of Conservation did not contain all the information sought. Meeting the request would require a physical search of the relevant paper files in each of the 13 conservancy offices, as well as the retrieval of files from off-site storage. However, the Minister advised that the Department could provide a report of readily extracted information from the Land Register, which the requester could then use to identify particular covenants of interest in order to make more specific follow-up requests for official information. The provision of this material resolved the complaint.

This case note is published under the authority of the Ombudsmen Rules 1989. It sets out an Ombudsman’s view on the facts of a particular case. It should not be taken as establishing any legal precedent that would bind an Ombudsman in future.

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