Statement From The Special Minister Of State

07 August 2015

Today, Ms Lynne Bertolini tendered her resignation as the Freedom of Information Commissioner to the Governor effective 5 September 2015.

The Government thanks Ms Bertolini for her service.

An announcement regarding the appointment of an FOI Commissioner will be made shortly. Assistant Commissioner Mike Ison will act as the FOI Commissioner in the interim.

The Government is committed to ensuring a strong and robust system of scrutiny over FOI decision-making.

The Government has identified significant opportunities to reform the FOI system to improve FOI oversight and make it quicker and easier for Victorians to access information. The Government is progressing reforms including:

  • Establishing a new Office of the Public Access Counsellor to replace the Freedom of Information Commissioner;
  • Providing the new Office with additional powers including the power to review decisions to withhold documents on grounds of the ‘Cabinet-in-Confidence’ exemption, and
  • Requiring agencies to more quickly progress and respond to FOI requests.

A Bill to establish the new Office of the Public Access Counsellor will be introduced into Parliament in the first half of 2016.

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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