Published : 08 September 2021

Public Service Commissioner Peter Hughes today released the Official Information Act statistics for the six months to June 2021.

The latest statistics cover 118 agencies that collectively completed 27,755 official information requests between January and June 2021, a 10% increase in volume on the previous six months.

In the six months to June, 61 agencies completed 100% of their OIA requests within the legislated timeframe. Overall, agencies responded to 27,150, or 97.8%, of requests on time, compared with the 97.2% in the June to December 2020 period.

Since 2015 when the Commission started collecting OIA data there has been overall improvement in OIA requests being completed on time. In June 2016, 91.1% of OIAs were completed on time compared with 97.8% today.

Mr Hughes said OIA statistics on timeliness were tracking well despite a significant increase in volumes and external events which create extra pressure for agencies.

“The volume of OIAs continues to increase and in that context 98% timeliness is a good result,” said Mr Hughes.

“The work the Public Service is doing to mitigate the impact of COVID 19, while continuing to deliver all of our other services is a testament to the dedication of public servants in all agencies.”

Agencies are now turning their minds to other ways of making official information more freely available and accessible for New Zealanders.

“I’d like to get more information out there before it is asked for,” said Mr Hughes.

In the six months to June 2021, there were 197 complaints to the Ombudsman notified to agencies, up from 158 in the previous six months. A total of 23 final opinions were made by the Ombudsman against agencies, up from 20 in the previous period. This represents 0.1% of all OIA requests responded to by agencies.

The Commission now publishes additional OIA information on the data.govt.nz website, which contains all OIA statistics since 2015, as well as proactive release locations for OIA responses and Cabinet papers.

The latest Ombudsman data is also available.

Media queries: Grahame Armstrong 021 940 457 or grahame.armstrong@publicservice.govt.nz

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