Dear Flintshire County Council,

I would like to request the following information:

1) The full details of what real estate assets the Clwyd Pension Fund currently invests in, including the name and amounts of each type of real estate asset or investment being held.

This information should be broken down into the different
categories, including:
- Listed Real Estate securities;
Unlisted/Private Real Estate Property Funds/vehicles, companies or CIS;
- Directly held properties ; and
- (listed/unlisted) Real Estate Debt Funds/vehicles.

In the case of any unlisted real estate vehicles or real estate debt vehicles, the domicile of the underlying assets should be included.

A full list of all the companies, vehicles, CIS etc in which the Pension Fund invests in or has an outstanding commitment to should be covered in the above question. This list should include the names of each company and the amount invested in each company etc.

2) The current yields of the different investments the pension fund holds.

3) Can you clearly specify the total value of all real estate investments that the Pension Fund holds.

4) I would like to receive this information in an unlocked excel sheet without protected cells (.xls). If you have to password protect the excel sheet, please can you also provide the password to the excel
sheet.
5) Please supply a copy of the Pension Scheme’s latest Statement of Investment Principles and most recent Pension Fund Report & Accounts.
I would like to receive the information in electronic format if possible. If one part of the request can be answered sooner than others, please send that information first followed by any subsequent data. If you need further clarification, please contact me by email.

Many public authorities release their contracts, minutes and other information of interactions 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 what the Pension Fund is investing in, the terms of contracts and the minutes of meeting with 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 I would like to know the following:

* When these confidentially agreements were agreed
* All correspondence and email in which these confidentiality agreements were discussed
* The precise wording of the confidentiality agreements.

I 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. I 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.'(i)

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.

I reserve the right to appeal your decision to withhold any information or to charge excessive fees, and understand that under the act, I am entitled to a response within 20 working days. I would be grateful if you could confirm in writing that you have received this request.

Yours faithfully,

Samuel Hall

Flintshire County Council

Dear Mr Hall,

I write to acknowledge receipt of your Freedom of Information request
which has been given the reference number F00017281.  If you send any
further correspondence about this request, please include the reference
number and either e.mail it to [Flintshire County Council request email], or post it to
Freedom of Information, Flintshire County Council, Information Governance,
County Hall, Mold, Flintshire, CH7 6NA.

Your request has been forwarded to the Freedom of Information Act Contact
Officer for Pensions Section to process and this Officer will be in
contact with you.

Regards,

FOI Contact Officer

FOI Contact Officer | Swyddog Cyswllt Rhyddid Gwybodaeth

Governance | Llywodraethu 

Flintshire County Council | Cyngor Sir y Fflint

____________________________________________________________________________________

Tel | Ffôn | 01352 702121

Email | Ebost | [Flintshire County Council request email]

http://www.flintshire.gov.uk | http://www.siryfflint.gov.uk 

http://www.twitter.com/flintshirecc | http://www.twitter.com/csyfflint

********************************************************************** We
welcome correspondence in Welsh. We will respond to correspondence
received in Welsh without delay. Opinions advice, conclusions and other
information in this message that do not relate to the official business of
Flintshire County Council shall be understood as neither given nor
endorsed by it or on its behalf, and consequently Flintshire County
Council shall bear no responsibility whatsoever in respect thereof. Rydym
yn croesawu gohebiaeth Gymraeg. Ymatebwn yn ddi-oed i ohebiaeth a
dderbynnir drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg. Deellir na fydd unrhyw safbwyntiau, na
chynghorion, na chasgliadau nac unrhyw wybodaeth arall yn y neges hon, nad
ydynt yn berthnasol i waith swyddogol Cyngor Sir y Fflint, yn cael eu
cynnig na'u cadarnhau ganddo nac ar ei ran, ac felly ni fydd Cyngor Sir y
Fflint yn derbyn unrhyw gyfrifoldeb am y rhannau hynny o'r neges.
**********************************************************************

Debbie A Fielder, Flintshire County Council

2 Atodiad

Mr Hall

 

In relation to your request for information below

 

I would like to request the following information: 1) The full details of
what real estate assets the Clwyd Pension Fund currently invests in,
including the name and amounts of each type of real estate asset or
investment being held. This information should be broken down into the
different categories, including: - Listed Real Estate securities;
Unlisted/Private Real Estate Property Funds/vehicles, companies or CIS; -
Directly held properties ; and - (listed/unlisted) Real Estate Debt
Funds/vehicles. In the case of any unlisted real estate vehicles or real
estate debt vehicles, the domicile of the underlying assets should be
included. A full list of all the companies, vehicles, CIS etc in which the
Pension Fund invests in or has an outstanding commitment to should be
covered in the above question. This list should include the names of each
company and the amount invested in each company etc. 2) The current yields
of the different investments the pension fund holds. 3) Can you clearly
specify the total value of all real estate investments that the Pension
Fund holds. 4) I would like to receive this information in an unlocked
excel sheet without protected cells (.xls). If you have to password
protect the excel sheet, please can you also provide the password to the
excel sheet. 5) Please supply a copy of the Pension Scheme’s latest
Statement of Investment Principles and most recent Pension Fund Report &
Accounts. I would like to receive the information in electronic format if
possible. If one part of the request can be answered sooner than others,
please send that information first followed by any subsequent data. If you
need further clarification, please contact me by email. Many public
authorities release their contracts, minutes and other information of
interactions 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 what the
Pension Fund is investing in, the terms of contracts and the minutes of
meeting with 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 I would like to know the following: * When
these confidentially agreements were agreed * All correspondence and email
in which these confidentiality agreements were discussed * The precise
wording of the confidentiality agreements. I 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. I 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.'(i) 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. I reserve the right to appeal your
decision to withhold any information or to charge excessive fees, and
understand that under the act, I am entitled to a response within 20
working days. I would be grateful if you could confirm in writing that you
have received this request.

 

The information we hold on all our Real Assets is included on the attached
spreadsheet which I hope will address the majority of your questions

 

I have also attached our ISS as a separate document.

 

The Fund’s Annual Report and Accounts is a large document which can
sometimes get blocked so I will send through on a separate email but it
can be accessed on our website

 

MSS.CLWYDPENSIONFUND.ORG.UK  within the investments section

 

Please contact me if you require anything further

 

Yours sincerely

Debbie A Fielder

FOI Officer

 

 

If you are dissatisfied with the Council’s handling of your request for
information, you can ask for an internal review within 2 months of the
date of this response. Where your complaint is a complex one it may not be
possible to deal with it within the above timescales. In such a situation
a progress report will be sent within the above timescales.

 

Requests for an internal review should be addressed to the Council’s
Information Governance Manager at:

 

Information Governance Team,

County Hall,

Mold,

CH7 6NA

 

Or by emailing [1][Flintshire County Council request email]

 

Please remember to quote your original request’s reference number.

 

You also have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner. The
Information Commissioner can be contacted at the following address:

 

Information Commissioner’s Office,

Wycliffe House,

Water Lane,

Wilmslow,

Cheshire,

SK9 5AF.

 

However, please note that the Commissioner will not normally investigate a
complaint until it has been through our own internal review process

 

 

 

Debbie Fielder
____________________________________________________________________________________
Pensions Finance Manager | Rheolwr Cyllid Pensiynau
Clwyd Pension Fund | Cronfa Bensiynau Clwyd
Corporate Services | Gwasanaethau Corfforaethol
Flintshire County Council | Cyngor Sir y Fflint
____________________________________________________________________________________
Tel | Ffôn | 01352 702259
Mobile | Ffon Symudol | 07342 060172
Email | Ebost | [2][email address]
____________________________________________________________________________________
mss.clwydpensionfund.org.uk

[3]www.twitter.com/clwydPensions

 

**********************************************************************

We welcome correspondence in Welsh. We will respond to correspondence
received in Welsh without delay.

Opinions advice, conclusions and other information in this

message that do not relate to the official business of

Flintshire County Council shall be understood as neither

given nor endorsed by it or on its behalf, and consequently

Flintshire County Council shall bear no responsibility

whatsoever in respect thereof.

Rydym yn croesawu gohebiaeth Gymraeg. Ymatebwn yn ddi-oed i ohebiaeth a
dderbynnir drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg.

Deellir na fydd unrhyw safbwyntiau, na chynghorion, na

chasgliadau nac unrhyw wybodaeth arall yn y neges hon,

nad ydynt yn berthnasol i waith swyddogol

Cyngor Sir y Fflint, yn cael eu cynnig na'u cadarnhau ganddo

nac ar ei ran, ac felly ni fydd Cyngor Sir y Fflint yn derbyn

unrhyw gyfrifoldeb am y rhannau hynny o'r neges.

**********************************************************************

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[Flintshire County Council request email]
2. mailto:[email address]
3. http://www.twitter.com/clwyd

Debbie A Fielder, Flintshire County Council

1 Atodiad

Mr Hall

 

In addition to the previous email, please see our Annual Report

 

Thanks

 

Deb

 

Debbie Fielder
____________________________________________________________________________________
Pensions Finance Manager | Rheolwr Cyllid Pensiynau
Clwyd Pension Fund | Cronfa Bensiynau Clwyd
Corporate Services | Gwasanaethau Corfforaethol
Flintshire County Council | Cyngor Sir y Fflint
____________________________________________________________________________________
Tel | Ffôn | 01352 702259
Mobile | Ffon Symudol | 07342 060172
Email | Ebost | [1][email address]
____________________________________________________________________________________
mss.clwydpensionfund.org.uk

[2]www.twitter.com/clwydPensions

 

**********************************************************************

We welcome correspondence in Welsh. We will respond to correspondence
received in Welsh without delay.

Opinions advice, conclusions and other information in this

message that do not relate to the official business of

Flintshire County Council shall be understood as neither

given nor endorsed by it or on its behalf, and consequently

Flintshire County Council shall bear no responsibility

whatsoever in respect thereof.

Rydym yn croesawu gohebiaeth Gymraeg. Ymatebwn yn ddi-oed i ohebiaeth a
dderbynnir drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg.

Deellir na fydd unrhyw safbwyntiau, na chynghorion, na

chasgliadau nac unrhyw wybodaeth arall yn y neges hon,

nad ydynt yn berthnasol i waith swyddogol

Cyngor Sir y Fflint, yn cael eu cynnig na'u cadarnhau ganddo

nac ar ei ran, ac felly ni fydd Cyngor Sir y Fflint yn derbyn

unrhyw gyfrifoldeb am y rhannau hynny o'r neges.

**********************************************************************

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[email address]
2. http://www.twitter.com/clwyd