Everyone has the right to request access to City records. The Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (MFIPPA) grants to access to records. The Act applies to local government organizations, including municipalities, police services boards, school boards, conservation authorities, boards of health and transit commissions.

If you require a PDF in an accessible format, contact our Municipal Accessibility Specialist at 807-625-2240 or email accessibility@thunderbay.ca.

Making a request

You can make a request for City of Thunder Bay or Tbaytel information by filling out the Access/Correction Request Form or writing a letter stating exactly what information you are looking for, and paying a mandatory $5 application fee.

Police information

If you want Police information, please request it directly from the Thunder Bay Police Service.

Fee

Pay the $5 application fee in cash in person, or by cheque payable to the "City of Thunder Bay". Sometimes, we have to charge more fees for the records. You need to pay the fees before you can have the records.

Make a request in person

Requests can be made in person at the Harry Kirk Archives and Records Centre, 235 Vickers St N, Monday-Friday, 8:30am - 4:30pm, or by mail to:

Information/Privacy Coordinator
City Archives
500 Donald St E
Thunder Bay, ON P7E 5V3

When the City receives your request, we have 30 days to respond. The response will either have the records you asked for, or will explain why we cannot give you those records.

Additional fees

We may charge additional fees if your request involves a great deal of staff time in order to complete, or involves a large number of documents. The payment and amount of fees are set out in section 45(1) of the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and sections 6, 6.1, 7 and 9 of Regulation 823 under the Act.

Permitted fees

Permitted fees are:

  • Application Fee - $5.00
  • Copies - $0.20 per page
  • Computer Disks - $10.00 per disk
  • Search Time - $7.50 per 15 minutes
  • Preparation Time - $7.50 per 15 minutes
  • Computer Programming - $15.00 per 15 minutes
  • Costs for external services - as invoiced
  • Shipping costs - as invoiced

Public Records

Public records are available to anyone and do not need a formal request.

For example:

  • Council and Committee of the Whole Minutes
  • By-laws
  • Policies & Procedures
  • City Budgets

Many reports including the Drinking Water Quality Annual Report and the City's Strategic Plan are freely available. Search our website or contact the department who has written the document first to see if you can have it without making a formal request. If you want information that was presented to City Council, contact the City Clerk's office.

Building Plans

If you own the property, building plans can be accessed directly from Building Services. If you want information about City owned buildings, you need to make a formal request under the Act. For more information about accessing building records, please read the Building Records Access Guide.

Written permission

Contractors, consultants, and other individuals must have written permission from the property owner to access the plans. If you are not the property owner and do not have the property owner's permission for access to building plans, you can make a formal request under the Act.

The Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act

The MFIPPA gives you the right to ask for any City information. You will be given most information, unless it falls under one of the ten specific exemptions. For detailed information about exemptions and procedures relating to the Act or its regulations, visit website of the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario.

Protecting personal privacy

The Act also requires the City to protect the personal privacy of the people whose information we have. It tells us how to collect, store, and use your personal information, and who we can give it to. It also lets you correct your own personal information if you think we have it wrong in our records.

Under the Act, the head of the Corporation is responsible for access decisions. For the City of Thunder Bay, City Council has designated the City Clerk as the head, and the City Archives is responsible for daily administration.

Personal Privacy

The City of Thunder Bay takes the privacy of its citizens and employees very seriously. Personal information is collected and used only for specific purposes, which are identified at the time of collection, and it will not be disclosed except in rare circumstances when required by law. Please contact the City Archives if you have any questions or concerns about access to municipal records and the protection of your privacy.

Personal information is defined as: recorded information about an identifiable individual, including,

  • Information relating to the race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation or marital or family status of the individual;
  • Information relating to the education or the medical, psychiatric, psychological, criminal or employment history of the individual or information relating to financial transactions in which the individual has been involved;
  • Any identifying number, symbol or other particular assigned to the individual;
  • The address, telephone number, fingerprints or blood type of the individual;
  • The personal opinions or views of the individual except if they relate to another individual;
  • Correspondence sent to an institution by the individual that is implicitly or explicitly of a private or confidential nature, and replies to that correspondence that would reveal the contents of the original correspondence;
  • The views or opinions of another individual about the individual; and
  • The individual's name if it appears with other personal information relating to the individual or where the disclosure of the name would reveal other personal information about the individual.

Personal Health Information

The Personal Health Information Protection Act (PHIPA) covers the collection, use, and disclosure of personal health information. This Act applies to any Health Information Custodian, a person or institution that has custody of personal health information.

Homes for the Aged and Superior North Emergency Medical Services information

The City acts as a Health Information Custodian in the cases of the Homes for the Aged and Superior North Emergency Medical Services.

Access your personal health information

You have a right to request access to your own personal health information. In most cases, you can access this information by contacting the Home, or EMS. If you need to make a formal request, you can use the Access/Correction Request form and procedure as for a request under MFIPPA. The City will be required to respond within 30 days, and some fees may apply.

What is personal health information?

Personal Health Information is identifying information about an individual in oral or recorded form. This includes if the information:

  • Relates to the physical or mental health of the individual, including information that consists of the health history of the individual's family;
  • Relates to the providing of health care to the individual, including the identification of a person as a provider of health care to the individual;
  • Is a plan of service within the meaning of the Home Care and Community Services Act, 1994 for the individual;
  • Relates to payments or eligibility for health care, or eligibility for coverage for health care, in respect of the individual;
  • Relates to the donation by the individual of any body part or bodily substance of the individual or is derived from the testing or examination of any such body part or bodily substance,
  • Is the individual's health number; or
  • Identifies an individual's substitute decision-maker.

Correcting Personal Information

If you think that personal information the City has about you is wrong or some information is missing, you have the right to make a correction. Depending what the information is, you may be able to make the correction by contacting the department directly, so that is the best place to start.

If you cannot make a correction with the department, or the information is wrong in many departments, you can request a correction by filling out the Access/Correction Request form, and submitting it and the $5 application fee to the City Archives.

When the City decides whether the correction will be made, the City Archives will notify you. Decisions can be appealed to the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario.

Appealing a Decision

If you are not happy with the information provided in response to your request, please contact the City Archives, 625-2270, and we will try to help you. If you are still not happy, you can appeal to the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario (IPC).

To make an appeal to the IPC, you will need to fill out the IPC's appeal form and also send:

  1. A copy of your original request for information;
  2. A copy of our decision letter; and
  3. A fee payable to the "Minister of Finance". The appeal fee is $10.00 for personal information and $25.00 for any other kind of information.

Contact information

Registrar
Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario
Suite 1400, 2 Bloor Street East
Toronto, Ontario, M4W 1A8
1-800-387-0073

Privacy Complaint

If you think that your personal information was collected, used or revealed improperly by the City of Thunder Bay or Tbaytel, you have the right to question our actions and to file a complaint.

You can make your complaint directly by contacting the City Archives and we can work with you to resolve the issue:

Information/Privacy Coordinator
City Archives
500 Donald St E
Thunder Bay, ON P7E 5V3
archives@thunderbay.ca
807-625-2270

Or you can make your complaint directly to the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario (IPC). You will need to fill out their privacy complaint form and send it to:

Registrar
Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario
Suite 1400, 2 Bloor Street East
Toronto, ON M4W 1A8
1-800-387-0073

Contact Us

Harry Kirk Archives and Records Centre
235 Vickers St. N.
Thunder Bay, ON, P7C 4B1
807-625-2270
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