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.