Funding of Humbug Shop Building 16 Marine Drive and 42 High Street, Margate

Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group made this Rhyddid Gwybodaeth request to Government Office for the South East

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

Yn disgwyl am adolygiad mewnol gan Government Office for the South East o'u triniaeth o'r cais hwn.

Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group

Dear Government Office for the South East,

We are writing to request information under the Freedom of
Information Act about your funding of the following organisation or
project. Specifically, we would like to know:

Re: Humbug Shop Building 16 Marine Drive and 42 High Street,
Margate

1. Has any money from public funds been given to any owners /
developers of this building since 2005 and, if so:

2. What is the total amount of the money given?

3. What were the conditions under which the money was given and
have the recipients of the money complied with those conditions?

4. How has that compliance been verified by the Council Officers of
MRP?

5. What action has been taken, or is to be taken, if the recipients
have not complied with the conditions of the funding?

6. Can an amendment to the original contract be authorised because
the grant now relates to a different property ie only 16 Marine
Drive and not 42 High Street now excluded?

7. Is this a new contract that would have to go back for new
planning approval and, does the grant have to be re-applied, by
MRP, on different terms because it's such a fundamental change of
use?

Our preferred format to receive this information is by electronic
means. If one part of this request can be answered sooner than
others, please send that information first followed by any
subsequent data. If you need any clarification of this request
please feel free to email me. If FOI requests of a similar nature
have already been asked could you please include your responses to
those requests.

Many public authorities release their contracts with private
vendors in line with the Freedom of Information Act. The exemption
for commercial interest under the Act (section 43) is a qualified
exemption, which means information can only be withheld if it is in
the public’s interest. The public have an interest in knowing the
terms of contracts and grants awarded by public authorities,
whether or not public money changes hands immediately.

If you are relying on section 41 (the exemption for legal breach of
confidence) then we would like to know the following:
• When these confidentiality agreements were agreed
• All correspondence and email in which these confidentiality
agreements were discussed.
• The precise wording of the confidentiality agreements

We ask these questions because guidance issued by both the Lord
Chancellor (draft guidance on FOI implementation) and the Office of
Government Commerce (Model terms and conditions for goods and
services) specifically state that public authorities should not
enter into these types of agreements. They go directly against the
spirit of the laws of disclosure. We would also point to the
Information Commissioner’s guidance on accepting blanket commercial
confidentiality agreements: ‘Unless confidentiality clauses are
necessary or reasonable, there is a real risk that, in the event of
a complaint, the Commissioner would order disclosure in any case.’

Finally, within the law of confidence there is also a public
interest test. Therefore, the information should be disclosed in
full. If any parts are redacted they must be for information that
can be proven to be a legal breach of confidence in court, and only
then where secrecy can be shown to be in the public interest. These
are difficult positions to argue when public money is at stake or
where a public authority is offering a private company a monopoly
to charge its stakeholders.

We would be grateful if you could confirm, in writing, that you
have received this request, and we look forward to hearing from you
within the 20-working day statutory time period.

Yours faithfully,

Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group

Jeanie Maynard, Government Office for the South East

1 Atodiad

Dear Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group,

Please find attached our acknowledgement of your request for information.
Please quote reference number F0002116 in any further correspondence.

Kind regards,
Jeanie

Jeanie Maynard
Safer & Stronger, Kent & Medway Team
Government Office for the South East
Tel: 01483 882436
(GTN 3011 2436)
Fax: 01483 882284

Please note that I work 4 days per week and my non-working day is usually
Friday.

Are you Compact compliant?
[1]www.thecompact.org.uk

>>> Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group
<[FOI #39288 email]> 23/06/10 11:57:02 >>>
Dear Government Office for the South East,

We are writing to request information under the Freedom of
Information Act about your funding of the following organisation or
project. Specifically, we would like to know:

Re: Humbug Shop Building 16 Marine Drive and 42 High Street,
Margate

1. Has any money from public funds been given to any owners /
developers of this building since 2005 and, if so:

2. What is the total amount of the money given?

3. What were the conditions under which the money was given and
have the recipients of the money complied with those conditions?

4. How has that compliance been verified by the Council Officers of
MRP?

5. What action has been taken, or is to be taken, if the recipients
have not complied with the conditions of the funding?

6. Can an amendment to the original contract be authorised because
the grant now relates to a different property ie only 16 Marine
Drive and not 42 High Street now excluded?

7. Is this a new contract that would have to go back for new
planning approval and, does the grant have to be re-applied, by
MRP, on different terms because it's such a fundamental change of
use?

Our preferred format to receive this information is by electronic
means. If one part of this request can be answered sooner than
others, please send that information first followed by any
subsequent data. If you need any clarification of this request
please feel free to email me. If FOI requests of a similar nature
have already been asked could you please include your responses to
those requests.

Many public authorities release their contracts with private
vendors in line with the Freedom of Information Act. The exemption
for commercial interest under the Act (section 43) is a qualified
exemption, which means information can only be withheld if it is in
the public*s interest. The public have an interest in knowing the
terms of contracts and grants awarded by public authorities,
whether or not public money changes hands immediately.

If you are relying on section 41 (the exemption for legal breach of
confidence) then we would like to know the following:
* When these confidentiality agreements were agreed
* All correspondence and email in which these confidentiality
agreements were discussed.
* The precise wording of the confidentiality agreements

We ask these questions because guidance issued by both the Lord
Chancellor (draft guidance on FOI implementation) and the Office of
Government Commerce (Model terms and conditions for goods and
services) specifically state that public authorities should not
enter into these types of agreements. They go directly against the
spirit of the laws of disclosure. We would also point to the
Information Commissioner*s guidance on accepting blanket commercial
confidentiality agreements: *Unless confidentiality clauses are
necessary or reasonable, there is a real risk that, in the event of
a complaint, the Commissioner would order disclosure in any case.*

Finally, within the law of confidence there is also a public
interest test. Therefore, the information should be disclosed in
full. If any parts are redacted they must be for information that
can be proven to be a legal breach of confidence in court, and only
then where secrecy can be shown to be in the public interest. These
are difficult positions to argue when public money is at stake or
where a public authority is offering a private company a monopoly
to charge its stakeholders.

We would be grateful if you could confirm, in writing, that you
have received this request, and we look forward to hearing from you
within the 20-working day statutory time period.

Yours faithfully,

Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Clare Parnham, Government Office for the South East

2 Atodiad

To: Cliftonville and Margate Future's Group,

Please find attached a response to your FOI request ref: F0002116.

Best wishes.

Clare Parnham
Relationship Manager Medway/PSA16 Lead
GOSE
1 Walnut Tree Close
Guildford
GU1 4GA
Tel: 01483 882332
[mobile number]
email: [1][email address]
Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for system efficiency and other lawful purposes.

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References

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Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group

Dear Government Office for the South East,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Government Office for the South East's handling of my FOI request 'Funding of Humbug Shop Building 16 Marine Drive and 42 High Street, Margate'.

The response to our request for further information states that GOSE do not hold specific information on the funding of the building we have asked about. We have received information from Margate Renewal Partnership that GOSE have been kept up to date with the ongoing negotiating status of 16 Marine Drive / 42 High Street Margate.

Your reply also states that the funding period is completed and projects are successful. In light of the fact that this building is still empty, derelict and works have not commenced, we feel this statement is in error. We have also been informed that the terms of the grant are re-written and have asked GOSE information about this and this has not been addressed.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/fu...

Yours faithfully,

Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group

Martin Harding,

1 Atodiad

Please see the attached letter concerning your request of 25 July 2010 for
an internal review.

Martin Harding
FOI Advice Team
D/06 Ashdown House
St. Leonards on sea
Tel: 0303 44 41025
 

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for legal purposes.

Sue Dossetter,

1 Atodiad

Dear Sir/Madam,

Please find the attached response to your internal review request dated 25
July 2010.

Kind regards,

Sue Dossetter
Information & Records Manager
Corporate Development
GO East
Eastbrook
Shaftesbury Road
Cambridge
CB2 8DF

Tel: 01223 372650
Website: [1]www.gos.gov.uk
Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for system efficiency and other lawful purposes.

The original of this email was scanned for viruses by Government Secure
Intranet (GSi) virus scanning service supplied by Cable & Wireless in
partnership with MessageLabs. On leaving the GSI this email was certified
virus free.

References

Visible links
1. http://www.gos.gov.uk/

Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group

Dear Sue Dossetter,

We have received your latest communication on August 25th which stated that further recorded documents would be made available within 7 days. We have still not received these documents.

Yours sincerely,

Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group

Sue Dossetter,

Dear Sir/Madam,

Thank you for your e-mail. This deadline has not yet expired but I have
forwarded your concerns to my colleague at the Government Office for the
South East who is dealing with this matter.

Kind regards,

Sue Dossetter
Information & Records Manager
Corporate Development
GO East
Eastbrook
Shaftesbury Road
Cambridge
CB2 8DF

Tel: 01223 372650
Website: [1]www.gos.gov.uk

>>> Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group
<[FOI #39288 email]> 29/08/2010 11:56:19 >>>
Dear Sue Dossetter,

We have received your latest communication on August 25th which
stated that further recorded documents would be made available
within 7 days. We have still not received these documents.

Yours sincerely,

Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

JOHN PINNELL, Government Office for the South East

4 Atodiad

Dear Sir/Madam

Please find attached formal response together with the relevant documents
identified under the internal review procedure.

John Pinnell

John Pinnell
European Programme Manager
Government Office for the South East
Bridge House
1 Walnut Tree Close
Guildford, Surrey
GU1 4GA

Tel: 01483 882360
[mobile number]

[1][email address]
[2]www.gos.gov.uk

To find out more about our work please visit our website

Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for system efficiency and other lawful purposes.

The original of this email was scanned for viruses by Government Secure
Intranet (GSi) virus scanning service supplied by Cable & Wireless in
partnership with MessageLabs. On leaving the GSI this email was certified
virus free.

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[email address]
2. http://www.gos.gov.uk/

Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group

Dear Government Office for the South East,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Government Office for the South East's handling of my FOI request 'Funding of Humbug Shop Building 16 Marine Drive and 42 High Street, Margate'.

The reports supplied detail the recipient of funds as Meltree Properties. We believe this is an error. Meltree Properties results as a company dissolved in 2005.

1. Please can you clarify the company that received the grant.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/fu...

Yours faithfully,

Margate Conservation Area Advisory Group