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Ottawa cops want $6,300 for cyclist collision data

The Ottawa Police Service says it will cost thousands of dollars to produce data on the location, time and data of collisions between cyclists and motor vehicles.

The Ottawa Police Service wants $6,300 for data on collisions between cyclists and motor vehicles.

Metro file photo

The Ottawa Police Service wants $6,300 for data on collisions between cyclists and motor vehicles.

Data doesn’t come cheap, especially when it comes to the Ottawa Police Service.

The cops want $6,300 in exchange for records showing the location, time and date of collisions between cyclists and motor vehicles.

In July, Metro filed a request under the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act for “all records related to collisions between motor vehicles and cyclists in the city from January 2014 to July 27, 2015. Please include the location of the collisions, the tame and date of the collisions, any information that describes what happened, and whether any charges were laid.

Carol Brunet, a freedom of information analyst for the force, previously told Metro the Ottawa Police Service would have to write a “program” to extract the data from its records.

Metro subsequently spoke with Glenn Richardson, the police’s manager of business solutions support, who said he would try to see if there was a less costly way of extracting the data.

Apparently, there isn’t.

Metro received a letter from the Ottawa police this week with a hefty fee estimate.

“Through consultation with the Ottawa Police Service, BIS Business Solutions, it was determined that in order to retrieve the statistical information you requested it is required to develop a program to retrieved the information as explained to you by BIS Business Solutions Manager Glenn Richardson,” the letter says.

The cops want $6,300 for the records – with a deposit of $3,150 by Oct. 30 before they’ll even go ahead with the request.

That's based on an estimate of 105 hours of "computer programing" at a cost of $60 an hour.

Metro has filed an appeal to the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario.

Ottawa police spokesman Const. Marc Soucy said he had nothing else to add beyond the explanation given in the fee estimate letter.

“Well, if you put in an FOI request for statistics and all that, when you get your reply it should be all explained in there,” he said on Tuesday.

“There’s no further comment to add.”

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