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Info Source Bulletin Number 36B – Statistical Reporting


Access to Information Act Statistics

The following is the collection of tables and figures that offer insights regarding requests made under the Access to Information Act and completed during the period April 1, 2012, to March 31, 2013. These figures are based on the statistical reports provided by government institutions subject to the Access to Information Act.

Requests Under the Access to Information Act: 2012–13

Requests Received Under the Access to Information Act


Requests Under the Access to Information Act Number of Requests
Received during 2012–13 reporting period 55,145
Outstanding from 2011–12 reporting period 7,694
Total 62,839
Closed during 2012–13 period 53,993
Carried over to 2013–14 reporting period 8,852

Requests Under the Access to Information Act: Comparison of 2011–12 and 2012–13

The preceding figure depicts the 28% increase in Access to Information Act requests received in the 2012–13 reporting period as compared with the previous year. It also shows a 2% decrease in the percentage of requests carried over to the next reporting period.

Source of Access to Information Act Requests Received


Source Number of Requests
Business (private sector) 21,242
Public 22,274
Media 8,321
Organization 2,415
Academia 893
Total 55,145

Source of Access to Information Act Requests Received: Comparison of 2011–12 and 2012–13

Disposition of Access to Information Act Requests Completed: Comparison of 2011–12 and 2012–13


Disposition of Requests Completed Requests as Percentage Number of Requests
2011–12 2012–13 2011–12 2012–13

Return to table note 1 reference * Requests are treated informally when it has been determined, through consultation with the applicant, that processing a formal request can be discontinued in favour of providing the information informally, i.e., outside the Access to Information Act. A request treated in this manner is not considered to have been abandoned.

All disclosed 21.2 21.6 9,272 11,681
Disclosed in part 53.7 52.8 23,468 28,534
All exempted 1.5 1.1 636 602
All excluded 0.8 0.5 346 278
No records exist 11.8 11.8 5,159 6,390
Request transferred 0.7 0.6 301 304
Request abandoned 9.1 9.7 3,962 5,256
Treated informally See table note 1 * 1.2 1.8 520 948
Total 100.0 100.0 43,664 53,993

Time Required to Complete Access to Information Act Requests According to Time Periods: Comparison of 2011–12 and 2012–13 See footnote [1]


Completion Time Requests as Percentage Number of Requests
2011–12 2012–13 2011–12 2012–13
0 to 30 days 55.3 64.8 24,128 34,997
31 to 60 days 21.3 17.3 9,313 9,331
61 to 120 days 12.9 9.8 5,639 5,294
121 to 180 days 3.9 3.4 1,712 1,847
181 to 365 days 3.6 2.8 1,575 1,542
More than 365 days 3.0 1.8 1,297 982
Total 100.0 100.0 43,664 53,993

The preceding table reveals a 9.5% increase in the number of requests that were completed in the first 30 days after they were received and a 1.2% decrease in the completion of requests over the 365-day time period. The data reflects requests for which extensions were required.

Five-Year Comparison of Time Required to Complete Access to Information Act Requests According to Time Period See footnote [2]

Time Required to Complete Access to Information Act Requests


Disposition of Requests (including requests for which extensions were required) Completion Time
0 to 30 Days 31 to 60 Days 61 to 120 Days 121 to 180 Days 181 to 365 Days More Than 365 Days Total
All disclosed 8,568 2,225 621 143 90 34 11,681
Disclosed in part 14,980 6,290 3,793 1,479 1,277 715 28,534
All exempted 290 103 117 47 33 12 602
All excluded 113 27 44 55 33 6 278
No records exist 5,387 413 510 45 35 0 6,390
Request transferred 299 2 2 1 0 0 304
Request abandoned 4,526 218 158 67 74 213 5,256
Treated informally 834 53 49 10 0 2 948
Total number of requests 34,997 9,331 5,294 1,847 1,542 982 53,993
Total as percentage 65% 17% 10% 3.4% 2.8% 1.8% 100%

The preceding table shows that 65% of the Access to Information Act requests were completed within the initial statutory deadline of 30 days.

Relevant Pages Processed and Disclosed Relating to Access to Information Act Requests


Disposition of Requests Number of Pages Processed Number of Pages Disclosed Number of Requests
All disclosed 1,531,621 1,466,515 11,681
Disclosed in part 6,347,283 4,454,856 28,533
All exempted 2,865,314 0 602
All excluded 17,686 0 278
Request abandoned 430,198 56,409 5,256
Total 11,192,102 5,977,780 46,350

Other Considerations Relating to Complexity of Access to Information Act Requests


Disposition Consultation Required Assessment of Fees Legal Advice Sought Other Total
All disclosed 636 516 57 6,578 7,787
Disclosed in part 4,968 1,170 575 17,268 23,981
All exempted 117 21 48 92 278
All excluded 127 5 37 53 222
Request abandoned 237 402 43 437 1,119
Total 6,085 2,114 760 24,428 33,387

Reasons for Deemed Refusals Relating to Access to Information Act Requests See footnote [3]


Number of Requests Closed Past the Statutory Deadline or Not Within the Time Frame Covered by an Extension (deemed refusal) Principal Reason
Workload External Consultation Internal Consultation Other See table note 2 *
Return to table note 2 reference * Other reasons include the unavailability of key officials, difficulties in obtaining relevant records, labour disputes, and lengthy power outages, etc.
5,762 4,123 766 321 552

Length of Extensions Relating to Access to Information Act Requests


Length of Extensions See footnote [4] 9(1)(a) Interference With Operations 9(1)(b) Consultation 9(1)(c) Third-Party Notice
Section 69 Other See footnote [5]
30 days or less 3,619 11 703 164
31 to 60 days 1,887 56 1,091 1,127
61 to 120 days 895 283 1,425 336
121 to 180 days 187 226 496 69
181 to 365 days 108 194 210 126
365 days or more 19 22 29 38
Total 6,715 792 3,954 1,860

Exemptions Applied Under the Access to Information Act


Information Obtained in Confidence
Provision Number of Requests
13(1)(a) 1,000
13(1)(b) 269
13(1)(c) 450
13(1)(d) 203
13(1)(e) 23
Total 1,945


Federal-Provincial Affairs
Provision Number of Requests
14(a) 508
14(b) 179
Total 687


International Affairs and Defence
Provision Number of Requests
15(1) International Affairs 2,321
15(1) Defence 1,190
15(1) Subversive activities 7,158
Total 10,669


Law Enforcement and Investigations
Provision Number of Requests
16(1)(a)(i) 405
16(1)(a)(ii) 215
16(1)(a)(iii) 102
16(1)(b) 622
16(1)(c) 4,266
16(1)(d) 125
16(2)(a) 80
16(2)(b) 34
16(2)(c) 1,067
16(3) 3
16.1(1)(a) 20
16.1(1)(b) 14
16.1(1)(c) 40
16.1(1)(d) 12
16.2(1) 21
16.3 33
16.4(1)(a) 1
16.4(1)(b) 0
16.5 19
Total 7,079


Safety of Individuals
Provision Number of Requests
17 176
Total 176


Economic Interests of Canada
Provision Number of Requests
18(a) 302
18(b) 404
18(c) 19
18(d) 322
18.1(1)(a) 75
18.1(1)(b) 30
18.1(1)(c) 10
18.1(1)(d) 86
Total 1,248


Personal Information
Provision Number of Requests
19(1) 20,797
Total 20,797


Third-Party Information
Provision Number of Requests
20(1)(a) 193
20(1)(b) 2,348
20(1)(b.1) 58
20(1)(c) 1,697
20(1)(d) 563
20.1 22
20.2 14
20.4 19
Total 4,914


Operations of Government
Provision Number of Requests
21(1)(a) 3,202
21(1)(b) 3,626
21(1)(c) 905
21(1)(d) 424
Total 8,157


Testing Procedures, Tests and Audits
Provision Number of Requests
22 357
22.1(1) 31
Total 388


Solicitor-Client Privilege
Provision Number of Requests
23 2,082
Total 2,082


Statutory Prohibitions
Provision Number of Requests
24(1) 1,963
Total 1,963


Information to Be Published
Provision Number of Requests
26 123
Total 123

Exclusions Applied Under the Access to Information Act


Act Does Not Apply to Certain Materials
Provision Number of Requests
68(a) 372
68(b) 6
68(c) 23
68.1 47
68.2(a) 22
68.2(b) 14
Total 484


Cabinet Confidences
Provision Number of Requests
69(1)(a) 137
69(1)(b) 8
69(1)(c) 41
69(1)(d) 83
69(1)(e) 326
69(1)(f) 21
69(1)(g) re (a) 437
69(1)(g) re (b) 89
69(1)(g) re (c) 364
69(1)(g) re (d) 141
69(1)(g) re (e) 359
69(1)(g) re (f) 111
69.1(1) 41
Total 2,158

Consultations by Other Government Institutions See endnote 1 Regarding Access to Information Act Requests: Comparison of 2011–12 and 2012–13


Consultations Number of Requests Number of Pages to Review
2011–12 2012–13 2011–12 2012–13
Received during reporting period 10,381 11,178 482,132 595,370
Outstanding from the previous reporting period 718 1,134 82,964 162,417
Total 11,099 12,312 565,096 757,787
Closed during the reporting period 9,962 11,262 461,710 632,007
Pending at the end of the reporting period 1,137 1,050 103,386 125,780

The preceding table shows a 7.7% increase in the number of consultations by other government institutions, which is relatively low in comparison with the overall 27% increase in requests received.

Consultations by Other Organizations See endnote 2 Regarding Access to Information Act Requests: Comparison of 2011–12 and 2012–13


Consultations Number of Requests Number of Pages to Review
2011–12 2012–13 2011–12 2012–13
Received during reporting period 220 243 13,431 8,082
Outstanding from the previous reporting period 12 12 156 891
Total 232 255 13,587 8,973
Closed during the reporting period 220 241 12,723 8,089
Pending at the end of the reporting period 12 14 864 884

The preceding table shows a 10% increase in the number of consultations by other organizations.

Recommendations and Completion Time for Consultations by Other Government Institutions See endnote 1 Regarding Access to Information Act Requests


Recommendation Number of days required to complete consultation requests See footnote [6]
1 to 30 days 31 to 60 days 61 to 120 days 121 to 180 days 181 to 365 days More than 365 days Total
Disclose entirely 4,221 659 250 65 87 7 5,289
Disclose in part 2,436 1,126 753 364 272 38 4,989
Exempt entirely 219 57 31 2 6 1 316
Exclude entirely 33 4 4 0 0 0 41
Consult other institution See footnote [14] 197 59 39 10 14 1 320
Other 220 44 27 1 6 6 304
Total 7,326 1,949 1,104 442 385 53 11,259

Recommendations and Completion Time for Consultations by Other Organizations See endnote 2 Regarding Access to Information Act Requests


Recommendation Number of days required to complete consultation requests
1 to 30 days 31 to 60 days 61 to 120 days 121 to 180 days 181 to 365 days More than 365 days Total
Disclose entirely 116 16 6 0 0 0 138
Disclose in part 48 13 9 3 2 0 75
Exempt entirely 7 0 0 0 0 0 7
Exclude entirely 0 0 0 0 0 1 1
Consult other institution See footnote [14] 9 3 0 0 0 0 12
Other 5 2 1 0 0 0 8
Total 175 34 16 3 2 1 241

Fees and Cost of Operations Relating to Access to Information Act Requests


Description of Fees and Costs Amount
Cost of operations See footnote [7] $58,658,040.00
Requests completed 53,993
Average cost per completed request $1,086.40
Pages processed 11,192,102
Average cost per page processed $5.24
Fees collected $314,205.00
Average fees collected per completed request $5.81
Fees waived $155,247.00
Average fees waived per completed request $2.87

Institutions That Received the Most Access to Information Act Requests


Rank Name of Institution Requests as Percentage Number of Requests Number of Pages Processed
Return to table note 3 reference * Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada was renamed Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada in July 2013.
1 Citizenship and Immigration Canada 45.3 25,010 1,471,572
2 Canada Border Services Agency 6.0 3,147 287,539
3 Canada Revenue Agency 5.6 3,137 1,203,253
4 Transport Canada 4.0 2,197 94,392
5 National Defence 3.7 2,044 156,813
6 Environment Canada 3.3 1,827 120,741
7 Health Canada 3.2 1,765 379,400
8 Royal Canadian Mounted Police 2.2 1,218 1,252,447
9 Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada See table note 3 * 2.1 1,148 120,543
10 Library and Archives Canada 1.6 900 493,423
11 Other institutions 23.0 12,752 5,611,979
Total 100.0 55,145 11,192,102

Access to Information Act Requests Since 1983

Please note that the statistics reflect adjustments made throughout the years.

Total Number of Access to Information Act Requests Since 1983


Requests Under the Access to Information Act Number of Requests
Requests received 577,711
Requests completed 564,155

Disposition of Access to Information Act Requests Since 1983

In the preceding figure, “other” includes the categories “all exempted,” “treated informally,” “all excluded” and “request transferred.”

“Unable to process” includes the categories “no records exist” and “requests that could not be processed.”

Disposition of Completed Access to Information Act Requests Since 1983


Disposition of Requests Completed Requests as Percentage Number of Requests

Return to table note 4 reference * The category “no records exist” was added in 2011–12. This category previously listed data as “unable to process” for the following reasons: “insufficient information provided by applicant,” “no records exist” or “abandonment by applicant.”

Disclosed in part 46.0 261,268
All disclosed 27.0 149,923
No records exist See table note 4 * 2.0 11,549
All exempted 2.2 12,643
Treated informally 2.2 12,815
All excluded 1.2 3,659
Request transferred 1.4 8,373
Requests that could not be processed (1983–2012) 18.0 103,924
Total 100.0 564,155

Time Required to Complete Access to Information Act Requests Since 1983


Completion Time (including requests for which extensions were required) Requests as Percentage Number of Requests
0 to 30 days 59.3 334,292
31 to 60 days 18.3 103,149
61 days or more 22.4 126,714
Total 100.0 564,155

Total Fees and Cost of Operations Relating to Access to Information Act Requests Since 1983


Description of Fees and Costs of Operations Amount
Requests completed 564,155
Cost of operations See footnote [7] $607,884,932.70
Average cost per request completed $1,077.51
Fees collected $5,784,959.02
Average fees collected per request completed $10.25
Fees waived $2,926,771.74
Average fees waived per request completed $5.18

Three-Decade Analysis of Requests Made Under the Access to Information Act

Requests Received and Completed Under the Access to Information Act: Three-Decade Comparison


Requests Under the Access to Information Act Number of Requests
1983–1992 1993–2002 2003–2012
Requests received 70,396 159,754 347,554
Requests completed 68,638 155,603 343,676

Time Required in Percentages to Complete Access to Information Act Requests According to Time Periods: Three-Decade Comparison


Completion Time Requests as Percentages
1983–1992 1993–2002 2003–2012
Return to table note 5 reference * Prior to 2003, only three time periods were recorded. Data collected for time periods of 61 days or more has been consolidated for the purpose of this figure and table.
30 days or less 66 58 59
31 to 60 days 18 17 19
61 days or more See table note 5 * 16 26 22

Disposition in Percentages of Access to Information Act Requests: Three-Decade Comparison


Disposition of Requests Completed Requests as Percentages
1983–1992 1993–2002 2003–2012
Return to table note 6 reference * Requests that fall under the category of “no records exist, transferred and abandoned” are all captured for the purpose of this figure and table under the disposition “could not be processed.”
All disclosed 32 36 22
Disclosed in part 36 36 53
All exempted 4 3 2
All excluded 1 1 1
Could not be processed See table note 6 * 20 22 22
Treated informally 8 3 1

Cost of Operations See footnote [7] and Fees Collected Relating to Access to Information Act Requests: Three-Decade Comparison


Description of Cost of Operations Amount
1983–1992 1993–2002 2002–2012
Average annual operational cost $5,745,902 $15,613,469 $45,912,751
Average annual cost per request $1,017 $978 $1,287
Average fees collected annually $83,291 $230,715 $315,321

Cost of Operations and Access to Information Act Requests Over the 30-Year Period

Average Cost of Processing an Access to Information Act Request Over the 30-Year Period