Is Burnaby the Metro region’s most non-transparent city?

Submitted from a reader…

What is lurking in the digital files at city hall? Pay me $2,677.00 and I’ll tell you.

The November 7, 2014, Vancouver Sun reports that the difficulties in gaining access to information at Burnaby’s City Hall are “extreme.” What is hiding in the files?

Excerpt 1:
Freedom-of-information requests from The Vancouver Sun to 21 Metro Vancouver municipalities are highlighting the arbitrariness and frequent lack of transparency at city halls in the region.
One straightforward request for a complete list of the mayors’ email correspondence for July 2014 provided a perplexing and troubling array of municipal responses.
At one extreme, Burnaby demanded $2,677 for Mayor Derek Corrigan’s emails for that month

Excerpt 2:
Burnaby records and information administrator Pierrette Hodnett wrote The Sun to say that the $2,677 fee included 43 hours of “onerous” staff time for disclosure preparation at $30 per hour plus 5,548 copies at 25 cents per page.”

Extrapolation and questions:
1. Does this include emails from any private email accounts that the tax payer of Burnaby pay for? Reimbursements for elected officials’ private accounts have been documented.
2. Electronic files are exactly that, could they not be transferred electronically? 5,548 paper copies, is this in-line with Burnaby’s sustainable policies?
3. If one wanted to keeps tabs monthly, for the period of one year, the extended costs at the same rate would be $32,124.00.

Link to source: http://www.vancouversun.com/news/request+exposes+lack+transparency+within+Metro+Vancouver+city+halls/10359919/story.html

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