Back in 2011 the Northern Ireland Audit Office said:
NIAO does permit, free of charge, the re-use of our information.
The NIAO and others are bound by regulations introduced on 1 July 2005:
The aim of the Regulations is to encourage the re-use of public sector information by removing obstacles that stand in the way of re-use. The main themes are improving transparency, fairness and consistency.
The Comptroller and Auditor General at the Northern Ireland Audit Office has recently qualified the 2013-2014 accounts of the Department of Culture and Leisure
NIAO conclusion [pdf file]:
2.6 As Business Plans have not received the required approval, there was no authority for this expenditure. I have therefore concluded that the expenditure is not in conformity with the authorities which govern it and qualified my audit opinion on regularity in this respect.
2.7 The Department of Finance and Personnel also indicated that if a department pays a cash grant to a North/South Body without the prior approval of the Department of Finance and Personnel then the department will have breached the provisions of the legislation and the expenditure is thus unlawful. However, there is conflicting legal advice on whether Department of Finance and Personnel approval has been provided in this regard. This is an issue which affects a number of departments and I would encourage this Department and others affected to further engage with the Department of Finance and Personnel to resolve this matter. I intend to keep this matter under review.
This file is word searchable but I was unable to do a simple copy and paste of these two paragraphs. If there is a question mark about the expenditure of public funds surely it is in the public interest that such information should be readily accessible as well as being an obligation.