Public Service Commissioner Peter Hughes today released the Official Information Act statistics for the six months to June 2023.
Overall, agencies responded to 26,030, or 98.2 percent of requests on time, an increase of 0.5 percentage points on the previous reporting period. It is the first-time timeliness has gone above 98 percent and is the highest timeliness result to date.
The average time to respond to all OIA requests, including extensions, across the Public Service departments and Crown entities, was 13.6 working days, an increase from 12.1 days in the previous period.
This is the third time the Public Service has collected and published data on an expanded set of measures, including the average time for agencies to respond to requests and the use of extensions, transfers, and refusals.
Overall, only 7.5 percent of requests, a reduction on 8.2% in the previous period, were extended.
Of the 26,505 requests, 946 were transferred in full to be answered by other agencies.
Of the 9.9 percent of requests refused in full, most were refused because the information was either not held, did not exist, was already in the public arena or would soon be publicly available.
The Ombudsman notified agencies of 224 complaints, a 13 percent decrease on the previous six months. A total of 69 final opinions were made against agencies, or 0.26 percent of all requests completed.
The Commissioner said the Public Service overall was continuing to improve its performance on requests for official information.
Media queries: Grahame Armstrong 021 940 457 or firstname.lastname@example.org