This template has been developed to be consistent with the Victorian Government DataVic Access Policy and existing policies adopted by Victorian councils. It is intended as a guide and may be adapted to suit each Council’s governance structure. Text to change is in square brackets [].


This policy provides direction on the release, licensing and management of data so that it can be used and reused by the community and businesses. By enabling greater public access to information, the policy is intended to:

  • help support research, promote innovation and stimulate growth in the local economy;
  • foster community engagement and collaboration; and
  • provide opportunities for more cost effective, efficient and responsive government.


This policy covers all datasets and databases owned and held by the Council and stored in formats including hardcopy, electronic (digital), audio, video, image, graphical, cartographic, physical sample, textual, geospatial or numerical form. Data does not include software.

Open Data Principles

Open access

Council data will be easy to find and accessible in machine-readable formats that promote its reuse. Preferred formats include GeoJSON and CSV.


Council data will be made available under flexible licences, allowing for unrestricted reuse by the public. Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC-BY) is the default licence for data released under this policy.


Council data released under this policy will be published on the Australian Government open data portal and/or the Victorian Government Data Directory Where possible, automatic publishing tools will be used to keep published data current. 


With limited exceptions, Council data will be made available to the public at no cost.

Standards and metadata

The Council will follow standards and guidelines relating to release of data and accountability for that release. Context and metadata will be provided to inform users of any gaps or limitations in the data.


Data may be exempted from this policy if required for reasons of privacy, confidentiality, public safety, security and law enforcement, public health or compliance with the law. Only data owned by the Council or sufficiently licensed to the Council will be released under this policy.

Governing Framework

The CEO has overall accountability for implementing this policy within the Council. This responsibility may be delegated to [the relevant Steering Committee or Manager].

This policy and a list of datasets released under the policy are administered by [the Information Services Department].

Where required, this policy may be supported by standards and guidelines specific to the Council, approved by [Information Services], consistent with the standards published at


This Policy is subject to review every 2 years, or as deemed appropriate.

Download this policy template as a Word (.docx) file Policy template.docx

Download as a .doc file (compatible with Office 2003) Policy template.doc