Office of the Australian Information Commissioner saved – but at what cost?

Lo and behold! The Freedom of Information Amendment (New Arrangements) Bill was yesterday defeated in the Australian Senate. This means the OAIC will NOT be shut at the end of the year. It could, however, be a hollow victory. The funding of the office will probably be gutted (if the Hockey budget ever passes…) and the painstaking work done by the first Information Commissioner, Professor John McMillan, slowly changing the culture of administering Freedom of Information in Australia may have been in vain. Peter Timmins excellent blog, Open and Shut, has the summary of the dramatic events yesterday.