October 06, 2016

Notley NDP responds to Freedom of Information request with a bill for $6,121

Sheila Gunn ReidRebel Commentator

Rachel Notley’s NDP is taking a lot of heat for their handling, or rather, mishandling of Freedom of Information requests.

Mainstream media organizations are starting to complain about unresponsive Freedom of Information requests, long delays and blacked out documents when they file requests with the Notley crew.

But this is nothing new to us at The Rebel. This is just another day at the office.

We routinely get denied access to information we are legally entitled to. We get government pamphlets instead of the documents and emails we know exist. We spend man-hours and resources trying to appeal the information roadblocks thrown up by this new “open and accountable” government.

And more recently, we’ve been getting bills, and not reasonable amounts for photocopying and toner ink either. When we FOI’d the Fort Mac water bomber contracts, we were handed a nearly $4,000 bill for our troubles.

But since we were undeterred by that obvious attempt to keep us from snooping where they think we shouldn't, the NDP raised the price on our journalistic curiosity.

The Rebel just received a FOI bill for $6,100.

We wanted records related to the power purchase agreements and termination by buyers of electricity including documents, emails, instant or text messages and correspondence. We also wanted any documents where the NDP was seeking legal advice about the power purchase agreements with Alberta energy retailers; all things we should have legal access to.

Whatever is in those documents, Rachel Notley doesn't want us to see it. It’s so precious and important to keep out of the prying eyes of the public that she’s trying to hide it behind a $6,121 paywall.

It’s outrageous and more of Notley’s broken promises.

Notley campaigned on accountability even pledging a review and changes to how documents are recorded and accessed by the public. Just don’t try to find out about what the review looks like. You’ll never be able to afford it.

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commented 2016-10-07 06:12:36 -0400
The common thread that runs through all politicians. Deny, deny, deny! And if it is irrefutable, deny it and give your personal assurance it never happened. Every government in Canada was put there by the electorate. As foolish as the electorate is, they do not realize they are destroying what was once the greatest country on the planet. Now they construct foolhardy questionnaires for surveys so they can point to the results and say we are still number one. Of course the left wingers popular refrain is we are still better off than other countries. The epitome of stupidity is revealed in that statement. If you think about it, what they are telling you is you have no right to complain until we are in the last place. Again, the problem with Canada is Canadians.
commented 2016-10-07 03:58:15 -0400
I should send them a bill for my time and trouble paying for my ambulance ride.
commented 2016-10-07 03:57:39 -0400
The taxpayer has already paid for the costs , it should cost nothing.
commented 2016-10-07 03:56:43 -0400
Socialist scum , they hate freedom so much. They make me sick.
commented 2016-10-06 22:39:09 -0400
Let’s just hope they’ve been stupid enough to mess around with you.
commented 2016-10-06 22:38:10 -0400
If there is a statistically significant difference between the average cost of ATI requests (that are similarly sized to those of the Rebel) made by others and the average cost of those particular Rebel ATI requests, you’ll know that there is likely no coincidence in the size of your costs.
commented 2016-10-06 22:31:18 -0400
It’s good that you’re bringing this to our attention but don’t stop there. Crowd fund for the court cost if you have to but don’t just let them get away with it because they won’t stop and I doubt that they have enough shame to stop treating you unfairly just because you’ve exposed them. They probably don’t care. In fact they are probably glad that you reported how they are treating you because it will send a message to other media outlets to be nice.
commented 2016-10-06 22:20:09 -0400
Make an access to information request about the costs of similarly sized ATI requests since Notley became Premier. If the Rebel is getting stiffed compared to others, you have her.

I hope you are seriously considering your legal options. If need be, seek to recover the costs of taking Notely to court and donate the rest to the Red Cross for Fort Mac or Alberta food banks. If they are breaking the law, hold them responsible. These lefty union ladies will lie and stiff you as long as they think they can get away with it.
commented 2016-10-06 22:01:34 -0400
The Rebel and its followers are not Alberta’s Official Opposition; however The Rebel should be bringing these concerns to the PC Party for their action in the Legislature. If this is a waste of time, I am sure Brian Jean and the Wild Rose would be happy to help make the NDP look bad.
commented 2016-10-06 20:20:38 -0400
You’re not going to pay that are you? Worse than PC s is understated
commented 2016-10-06 20:19:29 -0400
If they can provide a page count -which they already have -it’s 400 -then the work has already been done.
What a scam.
commented 2016-10-06 19:56:24 -0400
Why would you have to pay anything when their paycheques are already covered by taxpayers?
Are we to believe they’ll only get a partial paycheque this week if they don’t ding Rebel for money?
commented 2016-10-06 17:44:36 -0400
Those fees are treason.This is Canada sunny ways you know.Where can we find the break down for these charges like on are hydro and water bills like fix charges most likely.What a fuckin joke and they have their nerve to call it a DEMOCRACY.
commented 2016-10-06 17:19:01 -0400
The only benefit of the fees for FOI requests would be to prevent malicious requests which would overload resources. A good case can easily be made for Section 93(4)b, I would hope this was pursued…
commented 2016-10-06 17:15:30 -0400
Separation is the only way..!!
Unaccountable politicians are thieves and they know they are and they will go to any links to protect themselves.
All of our provincial governing bodies have had many chances to to provide Albertans with a future and opportunities into that future.
They refuse to be held accountable even buy their own words as “freedom of information act”.
Separation separation separation.
commented 2016-10-06 16:43:37 -0400
Where is the “freedom” when you cannot access documents through the Freedom of Information Act? Makes no sense & Notley does not want anyone to see the docs, so she tries to hide behind this erroneous bill, but don’t let her get away with this. Put up a fight, because this crap has got to stop, once & for all. I will be happy to pitch in for the costs & many others will to I bet, except for Penson & his aliases who never agree with us on anything even when it’s so blatantly clear of what Notley is trying to do.
commented 2016-10-06 16:33:59 -0400
Sheila, I hope The Rebel doesn’t pay one red cent. Like Liza said, demand a breakdown of this obnoxious bill. Notley should be reminded she works for the people, is paid by the people & she’d better start earning her enormous salary & perks that go with it. Sue them if they don’t cooperate & your MLA should be prepared to help you out with this BS. GRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!
commented 2016-10-06 16:33:50 -0400
Is just the Rebel being targeted for these obscene bills? Or are other media outlets a) not bothering to do investigative articles/pieces that are highly critical of the ndp government b) letting the Rebel fight for Freedom of the Press, government transparency, Democracy or c) they are taxpayer funded so they really don’t care how much of our money they spend. That last one is a joke by the way, as if CBC would even report on anything that does not fit their narrative or agenda. ;)
commented 2016-10-06 14:49:46 -0400
Send her a post dated cheque, dated the day after the next election.

Whatever you get back for your money will be so horribly redacted that it will be incongruent and useless as a smoking gun. I’ve always said that the FOI act was not designed to make government transparent, it was designed as an early warning to bureaucrats that someone is snooping and will find them out

- it provides time to hide the bodies, shredd the really damning evidence and send out redacted periphery docs. Essentially jerk you off while burying the evidence and concocting plausible deniability.
commented 2016-10-06 14:15:50 -0400
Deborah – what’s missing is a small hole it her head!!
commented 2016-10-06 13:49:32 -0400
The Wicked Witch of the West strikes again!
commented 2016-10-06 13:45:19 -0400
Improvise,adapt and overcome, take off the gloves and slip on the brass knuckles, start a hacking campaign of government documents, these serpents have to realize that this is a two way street, they survaill us and we do the same. We are at war for our sovereignty and our lives.

There is likely some golden nuggets found in emails between this government and the media.
commented 2016-10-06 13:26:40 -0400
All that’s missing in this picture is her witches hat!
commented 2016-10-06 13:22:15 -0400
Sheila, is there not an honest decent lawyer left in our country capable of challenging this tyranny?? Also, a FOI needs to be done – on what the Albertans are paying for 24/7 RCMP security for treasonous Nutley. When RCMP spend more time protecting political tyrants than the people paying their salaries – we know we have come to a national impasse.

Keith R., you are absolutely correct! It is time for a armed revolution! Everyone – stop sending your tax $$ in – it won’t take long and the coffers will dry up & the true evilness of these tyrants will be manifest. The tyranny in our country is becoming worse than that in Venezuela, Russia or China. It is only those on “will-ful” welfare & those at the trough (includes many RCMP) that are keeping these treasonous bastards in power. We have too many (but not the majority – like they think) people like Sean Penson, Jay Kelly, Jimmy Reece and all of their aliases who are fortifying the will of the tyrants.
Time for a good house cleaning.
commented 2016-10-06 12:54:44 -0400
There should be no need for a bureaucracy related to determining the validity a freedom of information request. Nor should there be any associated costs. In short, there should be no road block to obtaining comprehensive information from government excepting security issues, which are a federal jurisdiction.

Why? Simple reason is that we are a parliamentary democracy with a representative in the legislature. We should be able to ask our questions of our representative, regardless of party, who should then have the information made available to her/him by the government, without road blocks from the bureaucrats who are ordered by the government.

First, you have to have MLA’s that desire to do their job and not be invisible.

That we do not have access to information through our representative proves we have reached that point of Graham Greene, ’We are all taxed and none of us has representation.
commented 2016-10-06 12:38:12 -0400
Socialism in mankind is far worse than Rabbis in a Dog.(sorry Winston). Notley is beginning to look like Cllinton, she must use a lot of Makeup to hide the wrinkles. She also appears to have an excessive amount of Male Hormones in her.

The Rebel should take her to Court, all the Judges are Liberals, they will no mind hitting on a Socialist.

Alternatively, use a Phosphorous Grenade, inserted between her big toes.
commented 2016-10-06 12:26:16 -0400
This is right from the NDP playbook. I remember a few years ago a Winnipeg Sun columnist was looking into some shady shit the dippers pulled and they did the exact same thing.
commented 2016-10-06 12:25:33 -0400
well they understand crime comes punishment or else they would have no reason to hide it. I think this province should impeach the Ndp and throw them out for incompetence. force a new election
commented 2016-10-06 12:18:24 -0400
When you are dealing with a group of full-out Marxists . . . what do you expect?
The NDP are liars, loons and thieves . . .
commented 2016-10-06 12:17:54 -0400
The topic is FOI, not what she looks like. Stay on topic and sound half intelligent.