Case Report – OCA interprets MFIPPA application provision broadly

In a judgement released today, the Ontario Court of Appeal interpreted the section 2(3) application provision of the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and held that the City of Toronto Economic Development Corporation is deemed to be part of the City of Toronto for the purposes of the Act.

TEDCO is an OBCA corporation that is wholly owned by the City.  The City appoints all TEDCO directors, who in turn elect or appoint all TEDCO officers pursuant to a by-law.  The Court held that all of TEDCO’s officers are “appointed or chosen by or under the authority” of the City as contemplated by section 2(3).  It based its decision on the ordinary meaning of the word “authority,” the purpose of access to information legislation and the non-technical character of the language used in section 2(3) – marked by the phrase “appointed or chosen.”

While the judgement is confined in its significance, the Court’s reasoning on non-technical language supporting a non-technical interpretation of other proximate language seems worth a note to self.

City of Toronto Economic Development Corporation v. Information and Privacy Commissioner/Ontario, 2008 ONCA 366.

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