Ont. v. Cropley, 2005 CanLII 34228 (ON CA)

Judge:Catzman, Rosenberg and Juriansz, JJ.A.
Court:Ontario Court of Appeal
Case Date:September 26, 2005
Jurisdiction:Ontario
Citations:2005 CanLII 34228 (ON CA);2005 CanLII 34228 (NS CA);(2005), 202 O.A.C. 379 (CA);50 CLR (3d) 189;[2005] OJ No 4047 (QL);34 Admin LR (4th) 12;43 CPR (4th) 1;202 OAC 379;142 ACWS (3d) 711
 
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Ont. v. Cropley (2005), 202 O.A.C. 379 (CA)

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Temp. Cite: [2005] O.A.C. TBEd. SE.098

Ministry of Transportation (applicant/appellant) v. Laurel Cropley, Adjudicator, John Doe, Requester and Consulting Engineers of Ontario, Affected Party (respondents)

(C42061)

Consulting Engineers of Ontario (applicant/appellant) v. Laurel Cropley, Adjudicator, John Doe, Requester and Ministry of Transportation (respondents)

(C42071)

Indexed As: Ontario (Minister of Transportation) v. Cropley et al.

Ontario Court of Appeal

Catzman, Rosenberg and Juriansz, JJ.A.

September 26, 2005.

Summary:

An Ontario Privacy Commissioner found that components of the scores awarded by Ministry of Transportation staff to consulting engineering firms bidding on certain highway construction projects were not exempt from disclosure under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. The Ministry and the Consulting Engineers of Ontario applied for judicial review.

The Ontario Divisional Court, in a decision reported at 181 O.A.C. 171, dismissed the application. The Ministry and the Consulting Engineers of Ontario appealed.

The Ontario Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal.

Crown - Topic 7171

Examination of public documents - Freedom of information - Legislation - Disclosure - Confidential information supplied by third party - Consulting engineering firms bid on certain highway construction projects - Ministry of Transportation staff scored the bids - An Ontario Privacy Commissioner found that components of the scores awarded were not exempt from disclosure under the following sections of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act: 13(1) (advice or recommendations of a public servant), 17(1)(a), 17(1)(b), 17(1)(c) (trade secret or scientific, technical, commercial, financial or labour relations information supplied in confidence where it could significantly prejudice or interfere with contractual or other negotiations, result in similar information no longer being supplied to the institution contrary to the public interest or result in undue loss or gain) and 18(1)(c) and 18(1)(d) (information prejudicial to the economic interests or competitive position of an institution or injurious to the financial interests of Ontario or its ability to manage the economy) - The Ministry and the Consulting Engineers of Ontario applied for judicial review - The Ontario Divisional Court dismissed the application - The Ministry and the Consulting Engineers of Ontario appealed - The Ontario Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal.

Crown - Topic 7173

Examination of public documents - Freedom of information - Legislation - Disclosure of information where disclosure could result in financial loss or prejudice to competitive position - [See Crown - Topic 7171 ].

Crown - Topic 7174

Examination of public documents - Freedom of information - Legislation - Disclosure of information which could interfere with contractual or other negotiations - [See Crown - Topic 7171 ].

Crown - Topic 7204.1

Examination of public documents - Freedom of information - Bars - Interference with operations of institution - [See Crown - Topic 7171 ].

Crown - Topic 7208

Examination of public documents - Freedom of information - Bars - Advice by public servants - [See Crown - Topic 7171 ].

Crown - Topic 7214

Examination of public documents - Freedom of information - Bars - Trade secrets - [See Crown - Topic 7171 ].

Crown - Topic 7214.1

Examination of public documents - Freedom of information - Bars - Commercial, financial, labour relations, scientific or technical information - [See Crown - Topic 7171 ].

Crown - Topic 7220.08

Examination of public documents - Freedom of information - Bars - Prejudice to governmental economic interests - [See Crown - Topic 7171 ].

Crown - Topic 7246

Examination of public documents - Freedom of information - Judicial review and appeals - Standard of review - The Ontario Court of Appeal held that the standard of review to be applied to a decision of the Commissioner was reasonableness - See paragraphs 6 to 12.

Words and Phrases

Advice - The Ontario Court of Appeal discussed the meaning of the word "advice" as found in s. 13(1) of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. F-31 - See paragraphs 19 to 32.

Cases Noticed:

Workers' Compensation Board (Ont.) v. Information and Privacy Commissioner (Ont.) (1998), 112 O.A.C. 121; 41 O.R.(3d) 464 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 6].

Monsanto Canada Inc. v. Superintendent of Financial Services (Ont.) et al., [2004] 3 S.C.R. 152; 324 N.R. 259; 189 O.A.C. 201, refd to. [para. 7].

Ontario (Minister of Health and Long-Term Care) v. Information and Privacy Commissioner (Ont.) (2005), 73 O.R.(3d) 321 (C.A.), folld. [para. 9].

Thomson v. Canada (Minister of Agriculture), [1992] 1 S.C.R. 385; 133 N.R. 345, refd to. [para. 23].

Statutes Noticed:

Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. F-31, sect. 13(1) [para. 14, Appendix A]; sect. 17(1)(a), sect. 17(1)(b), sect. 17(1)(c) [para. 34, Appendix A]; sect. 18(1)(c), sect. 18(1)(d) [para. 15, Appendix A].

Authors and Works Noticed:

Ontario, Report of the Commission on Freedom of Information and Individual Privacy, Public Government for Private People (Williams Commission Report) (1980), vol. 2 [para. 21].

Sullivan, Ruth, Sullivan and Driedger on the Construction of Statutes (4th Ed. 2002), p. 173 [para. 25].

Williams Commission Report - see Ontario, Report of the Commission on Freedom of Information and Individual Privacy, Public Government for Private People.

Counsel:

Sara Blake, for the appellant, Ministry of Transportation;

Andrew J. Heal, for the appellant, Consulting Engineers of Ontario;

William S. Challis, for the respondents.

These appeals were heard on April 4 and 5, 2005, by Catzman, Rosenberg and Juriansz, JJ.A., of the Ontario Court of Appeal. Juriansz, J.A., delivered the following decision for the court on September 26, 2005.

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