Frequently Asked Questions
This page has been put together help you find the answers you need to our most "Frequently asked questions" about Freedom of Information.
Q: What does the Act do?
A: The Act gives a general right of access to all types of 'recorded' information held by public authorities, sets out exemptions from that right and places a number of obligations on public authorities.
Q: What information is available?
A: Luton Council has produced a Publication Scheme which sets out what types of information are published and how the information is made available
Q: How can I access information which is not published?
A: If the information you want is not already published in the council's Publication Scheme or elsewhere, you can apply in writing, using the online request form (on our How to make a Freedom of Information request webpage).
Q: .How many requests can I make?
A: The Act does not specifically limit the number of requests you can make. However, Section 14 of the Act states that a public authority can reserve the right to refuse any vexatious or repeated requests. This may include repeated requests from the same person for the same information, or requests which are intended to disrupt the authority's work.
Q: Who will be able to access information about me?
A: The Freedom of Information Act does not change the fact that your personal information must be safeguarded. Personal information held about you by the council is protected under the Data Protection Act and cannot be released to anyone else unless the law permits this or you have given your consent.
Q: How long will it take to get the information?
A: If your request for information is clear and the information can be provided then you should receive a response within 20 working days of the request being received. If the information requested is already published we will tell you where it is and how you can get a copy. If your request is not clear then we may need to ask you for clarification. Complex requests may take longer than 20 working days to process. If we think this is likely to be the case we will tell you why and let you know how long we think it will take to deal with your request.
Q: Will I have to pay?
A: In most cases the council will not charge for the time taken to locate, retrieve or extract the requested information. However, there may be a charge for the costs of photocopying, printing, postage and/or the cost of putting the information into any preferred format (where it is reasonably practicable to put the information into that format). If there is a charge, we will tell you what the fee will be before we provide the information. We will not provide the information until the fee is paid.
Luton Council, Town Hall, George Street, Luton, LU1 2BQ