19.1.1 Section 47 exempts from disclosure documents relating to the now defunct National Companies and Securities Commission (NCSC). Such documents are also exempt under the Victorian and NSW FOI Acts. The NCSC was abolished on 31 July 1992 and replaced with the Australian Securities Commission (now the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC)).
19.1.2 Section 47 has not been amended to take these changes into account. The documents held by the former NCSC are now held by the ASIC and, if an FOI request were made for these documents, they would be exempt under this section. As the ASIC is an agency for the purposes of the FOI Act any request for documents, other than an NCSC document, would have to be dealt with in the normal way.
19.1.3 This section also exempts from disclosure documents relating to the Ministerial Council for Companies and Securities if those documents were prepared by a Commonwealth agency or received from a State or a State authority and prepared for the purposes of the Ministerial Council or which disclose decisions or deliberations of the Ministerial Council other than an official publication. The Ministerial Council itself is not subject to the FOI Act. Requests for such documents would, in most cases, be transferred to the ASIC.
19.1.4 There is no requirement to consider the public interest. If the document falls within one of the exempt categories, then it is exempt even if there would be no adverse effect.
20. Section 47A - electoral rolls and related documents
20.1.1 Section 47A was inserted in the FOI Act on 24 December 1992 to ensure computerised information relating to the electoral roll held by the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) is protected from disclosure, so that such information cannot be obtained and manipulated for advertising, direct marketing or other purposes.
20.1.2 The provision only applies to electoral rolls and material derived from electoral rolls and only includes names and addresses (refer to s 83 Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918). It does not protect from disclosure electoral material that contains other information about electors such as age or occupation. The exemption does not apply to individuals who seek access to records about themselves.
LIST OF CASES BY SECTION
Arnold v Queensland (1987) 73 ALR 607; 6 AAR 463
Ascic v Australian Federal Police (1986) 11 ALN N184