Shetland Islands Council Pension Fund investments

Edward Jones made this Rhyddid Gwybodaeth request to Shetland Islands 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 llwyddiannus.

Dear Shetland Islands Council,

I would like to request the following information:

1) The full details of what the Shetland Islands Council Pension Fund currently invests in, including the name and amounts of each asset class or investment being held.

Ideally this information would be broken down into the different categories, including: Index Linked Securities, Unit trust Property, Cash Instruments, Unit Trust Equities, Infrastructure, Fixed Interest Securities, Equities Segregated Unlisted, Equities Segregated UK, Equities Segregated Foreign as well as any other investments that the Pension Fund holds.

2) A full list of all the companies which the Pension Fund currently invests in (this should be covered in the above question). This list should include the names of each company and the amount invested in each company.

3) Can you clearly specify the total value of all 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, can you also provide the password to the excel sheet. When considering the request for this data in excel format, please refer to Innes v Information Commissioner [2014] EWCA Civ 1086 (i), which allows a requestor to express a preference for communication by a particular means, specifically: "an applicant's right to choose to have information provided to him in electronic form extends to a right to choose the software format in which it is embodied." (ii)

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.'(ii)

Finally, within the law of confidence these 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,

Edward Jones

(i) Innes v Information Commissioner [2014] EWCA Civ 1086 http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/...
(ii) Section 11 FOIA and the Form of a Request https://panopticonblog.com/2014/08/01/se...
(ii) 'Freedom of Information Awareness Guidance 5: Commercial Interests' Office of the Information Commissioner, Page 10, https://ico.org.uk/media/for-organisatio...

Shetland Islands Council

Mr Jones

We acknowledge receipt of your request for information.

This is receiving attention, and we will provide you with a response as soon as possible.

Regards, L Adamson

Louise Adamson
Committee Officer
Shetland Islands Council
Montfield
Burgh Road
Lerwick
Shetland
ZE1 0LA

Tel: 01595 744555

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Shetland Islands Council

2 Atodiad

Dear Sir,

Thank you for your recent freedom of information request, and apologise for the delay in reverting to you. Please find attached spreadsheet.

I trust that this response meets your request. However, if you are dissatisfied with the way in which the Council has dealt with your request for information then you may ask the authority to review its actions and decisions in relation to your request, by submitting a formal appeal. The process for lodging appeals is set out in the attached leaflet.

Kind regards,
Sherrell Moncrieff

Shetland Islands Council

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Dear Shetland Islands Council,
Please can you give me a breakdown of the Unit trust equities and properties.
There will be companies listed in that information.
So far 98 of the 102 LGPSs have provided us with that information including all the Scottish LGPSs.
Best Jan.

Yours faithfully,

Edward Jones

Shetland Islands Council

Mr Jones

We acknowledge receipt of your request for information.

This is receiving attention, and we will provide you with a response as soon as possible.

Regards, L Adamson

Louise Adamson
Committee Officer
Shetland Islands Council
Montfield
Burgh Road
Lerwick
Shetland
ZE1 0LA

Tel: 01595 744555

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Shetland Islands Council

2 Atodiad

Dear Mr Jones

Following your request for additional information to your FOISA request of the 22 May.

Please find attached the additional information you requested from our finance department.

I trust that this provides the information that you were requesting. However, if you are dissatisfied with the way in which the Council has dealt with your request for information then you may ask the authority to review its actions and decisions in relation to your request, by submitting a formal appeal.  A leaflet explaining this process is attached.

Kind regards

Julie Phillips | Business Support Officer Executive Services, Shetland Islands Council
Town Hall, Lerwick . ZE1 0HB
Tel :         01595 744569

Email:     [email address]
Visit :      www.shetland.gov.uk

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Dear Shetland Islands Council,

Please can I get a breakdown of the unit trusts - by this I need to see the names of the companies invested in.

So far 98 of the 101 LGPSs have provided this information and all of those in Scotland.

Please can I get this information by Friday June 30 2017 as our deadline for research purposes is coming to a close.

Yours faithfully,

Edward Jones

Shetland Islands Council

Mr Jones

We acknowledge receipt of your request for further information.

This is receiving attention, and we will provide you with a response as soon as possible.

Regards, L Adamson

Louise Adamson
Committee Officer
Shetland Islands Council
Montfield
Burgh Road
Lerwick
Shetland
ZE1 0LA

Tel: 01595 744555

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Shetland Islands Council

Dear Edward

We are not able to supply this information before your deadline of the 30th June 2017.

The reason for this is this information needs to be obtained from our Senior Accountant in Treasury who does not return from annual leave until Monday 3rd July.

Kind regards

Julie

Julie Phillips I Business Support Officer
Executive Services , Shetland Islands Council
Town Hall, Lerwick. ZE1 0HB
Tel : 01595 74 4569

E-mail [email address]
Visit www.shetland.gov.uk

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Dear Shetland Islands Council, (Julie Phillips)

Ok please can you get the informatiom to me by July 4 in which case?

Hope this works.

Yours faithfully,

Edward Jones

Shetland Islands Council

Dear Edward.

I forwarded your request onto the Senior Accountant , in the Treasury department, and he has come back with the following.

There will be companies etc. within some of the unitised products but the Pension Fund does not invest in these companies the Fund Manager owns those investments, so we do not hold this information and do not know what those companies are. The Pension Fund's only investments are in certain unitised products, and that is the information we have given.

I hope this information clarifies your request and apologise it has taken this long to conclude.

kind regards

Julie

Julie Phillips
Shetland Islands Council

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir