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Councils can save money on LGOIMA responses by being more transparent – NZTU

Councils can save money on LGOIMA responses by being more transparent Reacting to reports that New Plymouth District Council is establishing a dedicated Local Government Official Information Act (LGOIMA) officer as part of a restructure, Taxpayers’ Union Campaigns Manager, Connor Molloy, said:

“While putting transparency and accountability to ratepayers front of mind in the council should be applauded, the Council should be taking this further and proactively publishing as much information online as possible, removing the need for people to request official information in the first place.

“As the largest user of the OIA in the country, the need for many of our requests could be eliminated entirely if, for example, all expenses were proactively published online. Councils already centrally collect and code this information, it would simply be a matter of exposing it to some much-needed sunlight.

“This is not a rare model internationally. Many US states publish all expenses and contracts online allowing citizens to analyse and identify waste from home while also increasing the likelihood that frivolous spending is caught out, often preventing it from happening in the first place.”