Court appeals




Access to information about the projects for regional development (so-called demonstration projects)

Krasimir Krumov (Monitor Newspaper) vs. The Regional Governor of the Town of Shoumen

First Instance– administrative court case No. 2113/2005, SAC. Fifth Division

In January 2005, the journalist from Monitor Newspaper, Krasimir Krumov, sumbitted a written request under the procedure stipulated by the APIA, to the Regional Governor of the town of Shoumen. The journalist demanded access to the information about the projects for regional development (the so-called demonstration projects). More precisely, the journalist requested a list of the projects that had been approved, as well as, information about the executors and partner executors, and the amount of money allocated for the implementation of the projects.

A written response was sent to the requestor, informing him that an Internet site that would contain information about all regional development projects for the region of Shoumen was under construction. Furthermore, the letter signified that after the online publication of the information, the journalist would be informed in person.

The refusal has been challenged with the argument that the publication of the requested information in Internet does not relieve the regional governor of his obligation to provide the information when requested. Furthermore, the information has not been published, which turns the statement made by the governor into a mere promise.

Developments at the First Instance Court:
After a single hearing the court adjourned.

Court Decision:
An October 2005 Decision of the Supreme Administrative Court reverses the refusal and returns the request back to the regional governor for reconsideration in compliance with the instructions given by the court. In their judgment, the justices emphasize that the requested information is undoubtedly public under the stipulations of the APIA and that no grounds for the refusal were given in the letter sent by the administrative body. Furthermore, the justices point out that the response received by the requestor constitutes a will for refusal, which, however, has not been expressed in the way prescribed by the law, i.e. the refusal has been announced in the form of a recommendation with the intention of better service provision in the future.

The court decision has not been appealed and has come into effect.

Subsequently, the regional governor provided access to all of the requested information to the journalist.

English Version • Last Update: 22.03.2006 • © 1999 Copyright by Interia & AIP