> Home Page > Town Hall > Departments > Administration > Request for Access to Information - FOIPPA

Request for Access to Information - FOIPPA

Before you make a formal request, please try contacting the Department(s) within the Town that may have the information you are seeking, as some routine information may be released upon a verbal request with front line staff.

The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIPPA - the "Act") provides the public a right of access to all records that are under the custody and control of the Town, with limited exceptions. The Act, however, is not intended that staff undertake compiled and summarized research in order to answer specific questions. The Act also protects your right to personal privacy by regulating how the Town collects, uses and discloses a wide range of personal information.  The Town must ensure collection and use of personal information only for Town business purposes (i.e. for the reason it was collected) and the protection and security of that information. 

Information Routinely Available without a Request  

Under the Act, and the Community Charter, public bodies must make available to the public, without a request for access, specific types of records such as: Council agendas and minutes from open meetings; bylaws; policies and procedures; budgets; annual reports; etc.  

There are records that are routinely requested by the public which include information regarding information related to building permits, property taxes, utilities, business licenses, etc. and can be released, except if the information contains personal information of another individual or third party. There may be fees associated with providing these documents and some of these are available from the Town's website.

Types of Information NOT Available 

The Act also includes specific exemptions to disclosure and therefore certain types of records are to be protected and not made available to the public such as: third party personal information; third party business information; legal advice given to the Town; law enforcement material; deliberations of Council that are authorized to be held in "closed" meetings; etc.    

Request for Access to Information

If the records you are seeking are not routinely available, you may submit a Request for Access to Information in writing. The request should provide sufficient detail (simple, clear and focused) to reduce processing time and possible service fees. The Town is required to respond to your request within 30 business days, however every effort is made to make the records available to you sooner, if possible. Depending on what you ask for, you may not get access to all information contained within the records and you will be advised of the reasons. If you are not satisfied with the Town's response to your request, you have the right to request the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner to review the matter.

Request for Property Information

  • Property owners (and their authorized agents/realtors) looking for information about their own property can fill out the Town's General Request for Property Information form and submit it to developmentservices@sidney.ca.
  • If you are requesting information about property that you do not own, you must follow the Request for Access to Information process outlined above.
  • General property information, including building permits issued from the year 2000 onward, can be searched by address and viewed on our Property Information Search Portal.


The Town may charge fees (as per Schedule 1 of the Act) for the costs of providing applicants with records. Also, as per the Town's Bylaw a 50% deposit required before a request is processed.