Access to information

Public information

In accordance with the Local Government Act 2020 and our Public Transparency Policy(PDF, 407KB), a range of Council information (including documents) are to be made available to the public.

This includes documents, process information, and Council records. The policy gives effect to the public transparency principles, and outlines the kinds of information available in a range of formats. The policy also provides guidance on how informal and formal requests for information can be made.

For more information, contact the Governance unit on (03) 5422 0333 or via

Freedom of information

Under the Freedom of Information Act 1982, everyone has the right to ask for access to documents held by Council.

You have the right to:

  • access documents about the activities of Council
  • access documents about your personal affairs
  • request that incorrect or misleading information held by Council about you be amended.

What documents can I access?

  • Documents created by Council
  • Documents supplied to Council by an external party

You can apply for access to documents no older than 1 January 1989. However, if the documents are about your personal affairs, there is no time limit.

What documents can’t I access?

Not all documents are available but this should not deter you from asking for access as each document is assessed on its merits before a decision is made.

The Freedom of Information Act allows Council to refuse access to some documents including:

  • Documents containing confidential matters considered by Council
  • Some internal working documents
  • Law enforcement documents
  • Documents covered by legal professional privilege
  • Documents containing personal information about other people
  • Documents containing information provided to Council in confidence
  • Documents containing information provided to Council by a business
  • Documents which are covered by secrecy provisions in other laws

You may be refused access to an entire document or you may be given access to a document with some information deleted.

How do I make a request under Freedom of Information?

Before submitting an Freedom of Information (FOI) request, you're encouraged to contact Council's FOI Officer on (03) 5422 0333, as the information may already be publicly available without having to go through FOI.

If you still wish to make a request, you can complete the Freedom of Information Request application form(PDF, 264KB) / Freedom of Information application form(DOCX, 220KB)email and pay the requisite application fee.

What will it cost?

Fees and charges are set by the Department of Treasury and Finance  annually and include:
Application fee $31.80 
Search charge  $23.85
Photocopying (black and white)  $0.20

Some fees may not apply. Please submit a copy of your concession or health care card and we will let you know.

If we estimate that your charges may exceed $50, we may ask you if you wish to proceed and (if so) you will need to pay a deposit.

For submissions via post

FOI Officer
Macedon Ranges Shire Council
PO Box 151
Kyneton VIC 3444 

How long will it take?

We must issue our decision within 30 days of a valid application being received unless that period has been extended in accordance with the FOI Act.

Delays may occur if your application:

  • is not clear and requires further clarification
  • does not include the application fee
  • requires payment of a deposit.


The FOI Act requires Council to consult with third parties about your request if the information contained in the relevant documents falls within certain exemptions. As part of the consultation process, your name and a brief description of your request may be provided to any person or body with whom we must consult.

Election campaign donations

View the list of registered election campaign donations for the 2020 Council election.

Personal interests returns

Under the Local Government Act 2020, personal interests returns are required to be lodged by Councillors, members of a delegated committee, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), and “nominated officers” (Council staff nominated by the CEO.)

A personal interests return is a record of the private interests of a person in public office that helps improve probity. In particular, helping to ensure transparency and reducing conflicts of interest.