LDL Catalogue

Jenny Griffin made this Freedom of Information request to Liverpool City Council

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

Roedd y cais yn rhannol lwyddiannus.

Dear Liverpool City Council,

I understand that LCC staff purchase equipment from LDL via a catalogue of some description.

Q1 : Is there a catalogue, publication or other document which describes products which LCC may purchase via LDL?

Q2 : If so, this must be information held by LCC. Please provide a copy of the most recent such publication.

Ta much,

Jenny Griffin

Jawahier Sharif Ali, Liverpool City Council

Dear Ms Griffin,

Acknowledgement of your request for information.
Thank you for your recent correspondence requesting information from the
City Council.  Your request was received in our offices on
21^st November 2011 and, is being processed in accordance with the Freedom
of Information Act 2000.

The information you have requested can be summarised as follows:

I understand that LCC staff purchase equipment from LDL via a catalogue of
some description.

Q1 : Is there a catalogue, publication or other document which describes
products which LCC may purchase via LDL?

Q2 : If so, this must be information held by LCC. Please provide a copy of
the most recent such publication.

If the above summary is incorrect or you wish to change any details, let
me know at the earliest opportunity.

A response will be sent to you as soon as possible and in any case within
the statutory deadline which is 20 working days from the working day after
your request was received.

For your information, the Act defines a number of exemptions which may
prevent the release of information you have requested. There will be an
assessment and, if any of the exemption categories apply, the information
will not be provided to you.  You will be informed if this is the case

Please quote the above reference number in all future communications.

Regards 
Jawahier Sharif Ali (Fatima)
Information Officer
Legal Service
Liverpool City Council
Municipal Buildings
Dale Street,
Liverpool
L2 2DH
Tel: 0151 225 3132
Email: [1][email address].uk 
Website: [2]www.liverpool.gov.uk

P  Please consider the environment before printing this email. Thank
you.  

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

References

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mailto:[email address]
2. http://www.liverpool.gov.ukp/

Andrea Glanville, Liverpool City Council

1 Atodiad

Dear Ms Griffin
Please find attached your response to your request under FOIA
Regards
A Glanville

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Dear Andrea Glanville,

Thank you for your response, which I have copied below :

"I refer to your request of 18 November 2011 under the FOIA. You requested the following:

I understand that LCC staff purchase equipment from LDL via a catalogue of some description.

Q1 : Is there a catalogue, publication or other document which describes products which LCC may purchase via LDL?

Q2 : If so, this must be information held by LCC. Please provide a copy of the most recent such publication.

I can confirm the Council holds the information you have requested.

In response to point 1 I can confirm that the Council does have a catalogue provided by LDL which describes products LCC may purchase via LDL.

In response to point 2 I can confirm that although the Council holds the information you have requested the information belongs to LDL, as the information belongs to a third party which in this instance is LDL and in accordance with the Secretary of State’s Code of Practice, it states consultation should be undertaken with the parties likely to be affected by the disclosure. LCC have consulted LDL and the following points have been raised for further consideration.
They have advised that they would not give permission to release the information on the basis that this information was provided in confidence, they have advised that the catalogue is the copyright of LDL and they have not given permission to reproduce or provide the information, they have also identified that the release of this information to the world at large would jeopardise their commercial interests in the market place.

The Council have considered the arguments that have been put forward by LDL and can confirm that the information is provided in confidence to the Council therefore considers the release of the information exempt under Section 41 – provided in confidence.
With regard to the second argument provided by LDL the Council considers that the release of all their pricing information would be considered a trade secret and as such would be exempt under Section 43 (2) – Commercial interest.

Release of this information would breach LDL’s commercial interests as it would reveal a trade secret. To clarify this point further LDL have a specific pricing structure for key business items and the release of this information to the world at large would have significant business implications for LDL as this would provide their competitors with a detailed analysis of how they have developed their pricing structure.

Use of Section 43(2) of the FOIA requires the application of a public interest test. The Council has considered the following public interest arguments in favour of releasing the information:

• That release would increase transparency.
• That public funds are being expended on the project.

However the Council believes the public interest arguments in favour of withholding the information outweigh those in favour of releasing it. If the requested information was disclosed under the FOIA and therefore made available to the world at large at this time, companies who bid for such contracts may be dissuaded from doing so on the basis that their bid prices would be known to competitors. The Council maintains therefore that release of the information is contrary to the public interest as it could increase the costs to the taxpayer.

The Council is therefore not willing to release this element of the information in response to your request."

Before I go to internal review, could I ask whether you could provide a redacted copy with the prices removed?

Yours sincerely,

Jenny Griffin

Glanville, Andrea, Liverpool City Council

Thanks for your e mail, I am away from the office and I will have limited
access to my emails during this time.  Any urgent enquiries please direct
to [email address] or contact the Information & Practice Support
Team  on  225 2709.  If your request is in relation to FOI/DPA please
forward this to [Liverpool City Council request email]  if this is a new
request it will not be considered received by the Council until it is
forwarded to this address.

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Gadawodd dh anodiad ()

I am not quite sure how information which is readily available to all employees of LCC, all employees of LDL and allemployees of the various schools in Liverpool - some tens of thousands of people, none of whom have been appraoached with a 'this is secret' clause can in any way be described as in any way confidential. Nice to see that the LCC response is putting in all on LDL though.

Andrea Glanville, Liverpool City Council

Dear Ms Grffin
I have noted your subsequent request for a redacted version of the
catalogue I will investigate this further and come bacb to you.
Regards
A Glanville

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Dear Andrea Glanville,

Your note, which promises a response to my clarification, is dated 16th December. This is now well overdue - please respond at your earliest convenience

Yours sincerely,

Jenny Griffin

Gadawodd Katie M. anodiad ()

Jenny,

This is so overdue (10 weeks or so since your original request) that I think you should just complain straight to the Information Commissioner, perhaps pointing out that LDL have never agreed to the disclosure of anything about its governance, costs, income, activities – and that’s a lot of information, given their remit. And that LCC always uphold these arguments, and do not really consider the public interest at all – unless forced to disclose stuff by the ICO (the JVA contract, the refresh proposal, etc. etc. etc.......).
This means no transparency about a huge area of council activity, and nothing we can use to work out whether or not what we get is value for money. Which is one of the most important rationale’s for FOI.

And as for this specific request:
1) A catalogue that is available to thousands of people, as dh points out, is hardly confidential. It’s already in the public domain – they just want to avoid it being published in the press or on here. But that's exactly what should happen.
2) There is no public interest argument in favour of withholding the information – and a very strong one in favour of releasing it, given the unwarranted monopoly that LDL have. They just want to prevent us seeing the extent of the ripoff - and carry on overcharging.
LCC should not be facilitating this - they are not contractually required to buy every single piece of equipment, consumables, etc. from LDL, but could actually buy from anyone. Proper information would allow effective competition - and save money for the council.
And this is a scam made in Liverpool, by LDL. BT itself is not afraid of competition in this field – the joint venture in Lancashire already has an on-line catalogue with prices.

Dear Liverpool City Council,

I wish to complain about the excessive delay in responding to this request.

You have 2 working days to respond (this request is already many weeks overdue). If you fail to respond by the end of the week, I will have no option but to make a formal complaint to the ICO.

Yours faithfully,

Jenny Griffin

Jawahier Sharif Ali, Liverpool City Council

1 Atodiad

Dear Ms Griffin,
I apologise for the delay getting back to you and find attached the
information you have requested.
Regards
Jawahier Sharif Ali (Fatima)
Information Officer
Legal Service
Liverpool City Council
Municipal Buildings
Dale Street,
Liverpool
L2 2DH
Email: [1][email address].uk 
Website: [2]www.liverpool.gov.uk

P  Please consider the environment before printing this email. Thank you

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

References

Visible links
1. blocked::mailto:[email address]
mailto:[email address]
2. http://www.liverpool.gov.ukp/

Dear Jawahier Sharif Ali,

Thank you for your response, which I copy below :

"I refer to your emails of 9 December 2011 and 6 February 2012 in which you requested a breakdown of the items included in the LDL catalogue. I apologise for the delay and can confirm the following items are included:

• Access to work equipment – ergonomic accessories
• Audio visual equipment
• Blackberry
• Data sockets
• Laptops
• PC’s
• Peripherals – including keyboards monitors
• Printers
• Remote access solutions
• Software
• Storage e.g. network and USB memory drives
• Tablet PC’s
• Telephony
• Web Services

I trust this information is of assistance to you"

This is, I have to say, a very poor quality response. This appears to be a list compiled in a hurry, rather than a redacted copy of the catalogue itself.

There is a pattern of poor quality FOI responses whenever LDL is in question. I can't really conceal my dismay that a local government officer would respond to a member of the public in such a manner.

Yours sincerely,

Jenny Griffin