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Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009

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47Access to informationE+W
This section has no associated Explanatory Notes

(1)A person appointed under this Chapter in relation to an entity (in this section referred to as an “auditor”) has a right of access at all reasonable times to every document relating to the entity which appears to the auditor necessary for the purpose of the exercise of their functions under section 45.

(2)The right conferred by subsection (1) includes power to inspect, copy or take away the document.

(3)An auditor may—

(a)require a person holding or accountable for any document referred to in subsection (1) to give to the auditor such information or explanation as the auditor thinks necessary for the purpose of the exercise of the auditor's functions under section 45, and

(b)if the auditor thinks it necessary, require the person to attend before the auditor in person to give the information or explanation or to produce the document.

(4)Without prejudice to subsection (3), an auditor may—

(a)require any officer or member of the entity to give to the auditor such information or explanation as the auditor thinks necessary for the purpose of the exercise of the auditor's functions under section 45, and

(b)if the auditor thinks it necessary, require the officer or member to attend before the auditor in person to give the information or explanation.

(5)In relation to any document kept in electronic form, the power in subsection (3)(b) to require a person to produce a document includes power to require it to be produced in a form in which it is legible and can be taken away.

(6)In connection with inspecting such a document, an auditor—

(a)may obtain access to, and inspect and check the operation of, any computer and associated apparatus or material which the auditor considers is or has been used in connection with the document;

(b)may require a person within subsection (7) to afford the auditor such reasonable assistance as the auditor may require for that purpose.

(7)The following persons are within this subsection—

(a)a person by whom or on whose behalf the computer is or has been used;

(b)a person having charge of, or otherwise concerned with the operation of, the computer, apparatus or material.

(8)Without prejudice to subsections (1) to (7), the entity must provide the auditor with every facility and all information which the auditor may reasonably require for the purposes of the exercise of the auditor's functions under section 45.

(9)A person who without reasonable excuse obstructs the exercise of any power conferred by this section or fails to comply with any requirement of an auditor under this section is guilty of an offence.

(10)A person guilty of an offence under subsection (9) is liable on summary conviction—

(a)to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale, and

(b)to an additional fine not exceeding £20 for each day on which the offence continues after the person has been convicted of it.

(11)Any expenses incurred by an auditor in connection with proceedings for an offence under this section, so far as not recovered from any other source, are recoverable from the entity in relation to which the auditor is appointed.

(12)The powers under this section are in addition to any other powers which an auditor has in relation to the exercise of the auditor's functions under or pursuant to this Chapter.

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