Council’s £325 charge for accessing environmental information deemed ‘unreasonable’

A local authority’s attempt to levy a charge of more than £300 for accessing environmental information was “unreasonable”, the Information Commissioner’s Office has ruled.

While access to information made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 is generally free up to an appropriate limit –  £450 for councils and £600 for government – requests made under the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIR) allow public bodies to charge a “reasonable” amount to the person asking for information.  

In a decision notice issued earlier this month, the ICO found that a charge of £325 imposed by Folkestone and Hythe District Council for accessing environmental information was unreasonable.

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