We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Paul Whitaker please sign in and let everyone know.

Dear Middlesbrough Council,

Please send
For the year 2017 to Jun 2018

1 all reports and management team reports in relation to Middlesbrough Bus Station
2 emails sent by Kevin Parkes, Sam Gilmore, Michelle McPhee and Michael Lawton in relation to the Bus Station, Middlesbrough
3 emails received by Kevin Parkes, Sam Gilmore, Michelle McPhee and Michael Lawton in relation to the Bus Station, Middlesbrough

Yours faithfully,

Paul Whitaker

foi, Middlesbrough Council

1 Attachment

[1]cid:image001.png@01D3C054.21C7E290

Dear Mr Whitaker

 

REF NO: 013011

 

Thank you for your recent enquiry, received on 21/06/2018, in relation to
Middlesbrough bus station. I can confirm that your enquiry is receiving
attention and a response will be provided within 20 working days following
receipt of your enquiry as allowed under the Freedom of Information Act
legislation.

 

In some circumstances a fee may be payable and if that is the case, I will
let you know the likely charges before proceeding.

 

Please do not hesitate to contact me direct on (01642) 729696/729698 or
email [Middlesbrough Council request email] should you require any further advice or
assistance with this or any other matter.

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

Public Information Officer

 

Finance Governance & Support

Performance & Partnerships

Middlesbrough Council

 

 

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Dear Middlesbrough Council,

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

I am writing to request an internal review of Middlesbrough Council's handling of my FOI request 'Bus Station'.

A request naming four officers , one specified subject matter and a time period is not excessive.

I request that you ask those officers named to interrogate their emails by using the two words ‘bus station’ or ‘media village’ or ‘TMIV ‘ as you will be aware that the media village is to be located where the bus station is currently situated.

Considering the amount of press coverage regarding the bus station it seems very unlikely there are no reports of any kind have been written and I urge you to re read my request and check again. What checks did you actually carry out ?

If no reports of any kind are available it would seem that project management needs to be investigated as how can this project be managed or developed without any reports.

Cheers
Paul

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

Yours faithfully,

Paul Whitaker

foi, Middlesbrough Council

1 Attachment

                                       

[1]cid:image001.png@01D2667F.F9FE5480

 

 

Dear Mr Whitaker

 

APPEAL ACKNOWLEDGEMENT - REF NO:013089 - REQUEST REF NO:013011

 

I acknowledge that your request for an internal review is now being
processed through the Councils appeals procedure and a response will be
provided within 20 working days, by 3^rd August 2018. 

 

Please note the officer now dealing with your enquiry is Ms Ann-Marie
Johnstone. Should you wish to contact her, you can do so at the following
address:

 

Ms Ann-Marie Johnstone

Corporate Strategy Manager,

P.O. Box 500

2nd Floor

Civic Centre

 

 

Yours sincerely

Janette Anderson

Freedom of Information Officer

Finance, Governance & Support

Performance and Partnerships
P.O. Box 500
2^nd Floor

Civic Centre

Middlesbrough

TS1 9FT

Tel.  01642 729696

Email:   [Middlesbrough Council request email]
 

 

All intellectual property rights are reserved.  Trademarks, brand names,
company names, and logos are the property of Middlesbrough Council, or of
their respective owners.  Reproduction, alterations, modification,
distribution, or re-publication in any format, without prior written
permission from the property owner is forbidden.

 

The Council's copyright and other intellectual property rights are
protected by UK laws and by international treaties.

 

 

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Dear foi,
In your letter you said id get a response by 3/8/18.

Please could you email it today please as it’s now 6/8

Yours sincerely,

Paul Whitaker

Dear foi,

Please send your response , it’s well overdue now.

Yours sincerely,

Paul Whitaker

Dear Ms Anne Marie Johnstone

Final reminder

Your handling of this FOI is totally unsatisfactory.

I request the formation to be sent without any further obstruction

Yours sincerely,

Paul Whitaker

foi, Middlesbrough Council

 

Dear Mr Whitaker

 

REF NO: 013171  

 

Please accept my sincere apologies for the delay in responding to your
email received on 7^th July 2018 and any inconvenience this may have
caused you.

 

Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of
the Freedom of Information Act.

 

The Corporate Strategy Manager, Ann-Marie Johnstone, considered that your
email provided clarification to scope the search of your request and
therefore this was considered as a new request rather than a request for
an internal review.

 

In your request you asked for the following information:

 

I am writing to request an internal review of Middlesbrough Council's
handling of my FOI request 'Bus Station'.

 

A request naming four officers, one specified subject matter and a time
period is not excessive.

 

I request that you ask those officers named to interrogate their emails by
using the two words ‘bus station’ or ‘media village’  or ‘TMIV ‘ as you
will be aware that the media village is to be located where the bus
station is currently situated.

 

Considering the amount of press coverage regarding the bus station it
seems very unlikely there are no reports of any kind have been written 
and I urge you to re read my request and check again. What checks did you
actually carry out ?

 

If no reports of any kind are available it would seem that project
management needs to be investigated as how can this project be managed or
developed without any reports.

 

Response:

 

Under Section 1 (1) (a) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA), I
can confirm that Middlesbrough Council does hold information falling
within the scope of your request.

 

Following receipt of your revised request received on 7^th July 2018,
searches of emails sent and received by Kevin Parkes, Sam Gilmore,
Michelle McPhee and Michael Lawton in relation to the Bus Station were
conducted within Middlesbrough Council, to locate any relevant
information. The searches located in excess of 1400 emails using the broad
search terms you specified.

 

Upon locating, retrieving and reviewing the information which you have
requested, we are unable to provide this information and believe the
request engages Section 14(1) Vexatious of the Freedom of Information Act
2000 (FOIA). There is no public interest test.

 

Section 14 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 allows public
authorities to classify requests as vexatious and/or repeated.  In such
circumstances a public authority is not obliged to comply with the
request.  The purpose of this provision is to prevent abuse of the “right
to know”. 

 

The Council has decided to refuse your recent freedom of information
request under section 14 of the FOIA.

 

Section 14(1) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) provides:

 

            “14. Vexatious and repeated requests

 

(1) Section 1(1) does not oblige a public authority to comply with a
request for information if the request is vexatious.”

 

Section 14(1) states that a public authority is not obliged to comply with
a request that is vexatious. In considering your request for information I
have looked at the Information Commissioner’s Office guidance in respect
of determining vexatious requests which are outlined on pages 7 and 8 of
the following link:

 

[1]https://ico.org.uk/media/1198/dealing-wi...

 

ICO guidance reminds public authorities that S14(1) is designed to protect
public authorities by allowing them to refuse any requests which have the
potential to cause a disproportionate or unjustified level of disruption,
irritation or distress

 

Section 14 of the Act allows a public authority to consider the wider
interactions with a requester beyond the parameters of the request itself
when determining whether a request is vexatious. To assist public
authorities the ICO guidance has provided a number of indicators as
typical key features of a vexatious request, these are:

 

 Burden on the authority

 Disproportionate effort

 Abusive or aggressive language

 Personal grudges

 Unreasonable persistence

 Unfounded accusations

 Intransigence

 Frequent or overlapping requests

 Deliberate intention to cause annoyance

 Scattergun approach

 No obvious intent to obtain information

 

 Futile requests

 

 Frivolous requests

 

The request does not have to meet all of the above outlined indicators in
order to be determined as vexatious.

 

Having reviewed your request, I have determined that the following two
factors are relevant in deeming your request vexatious, as outlined in the
guidance:

 

 Burden on the Authority

 Disproportionate effort

 

Although I understand that you believe there to be serious purpose and
value behind your request, I must consider whether the impact on
Middlesbrough Council is justified.

 

Your requests centre on a single theme i.e. bus station. The phrase ‘bus
station’ or ‘media village’ or ‘TMIV is very broad and the volume of your
request has a significant burden and is very resource intensive on the
Council’s resources, diverting such resources from service delivery. 

 

To provide you with the information requested would involve extensive
reading and redaction in excess of 1400 emails, of which some have
attachments, and include email threads where various emails are
duplicated. To determine what information can be discounted, would require
the creation of information by way of a spreadsheet in order to perform
searches on dates, times and individuals within each piece of
correspondence to avoid duplication of efforts. The creation of this
document alone would take an extraordinary amount of logging before any
assessment of the information can begin. It is estimated, conservatively,
that to process all of the information retrieved would exceed the
appropriate fees limit of 18 hours to process prior to any further
consultation with interested parties.

 

I would like to stress that I am not alleging that you deliberately made
your request burdensome, or drafted it with the intent of making it
otherwise overwhelming or oppressive. It is the simple fact that the
request cannot be answered, and Middlesbrough Council cannot reasonably
comply with its obligations under S1(1) of the Act without incurring
significant encumbrance and impact on its day-to-day activities.

 

Although you may be disappointed by this approach, I would stress that
such protection exist within the legislation in order to ensure that
applicants use their rights to seek information responsibly and public
authorities are not overwhelmed by over burdensome requests.

 

For the reasons outlined above, we are refusing your request under section
14(1) of the Act. 

 

Section 17 (6) of the Act allows a Public Authority to refuse to issue
refusal notice in instances when:

 

(a) the public authority is relying on a claim that section 14 applies,

(b) the authority has given the applicant a notice, in relation to a
previous request for information, stating that it is relying on such a
claim, and

(c) it would in all the circumstances be unreasonable to expect the
authority to serve a further notice under subsection (5) in relation to
the current request.

 

You can find out more about Section 14(1) by reading the extract from the
Act https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/200... and some
guidance points we consider when applying this exemption by reviewing the
guidance provided in the following link
https://ico.org.uk/media/for-organisatio...

 

Under Section 16 of the Freedom of information Act we do have a duty to
advise and assist. If you are prepared to further limit the scope of your
request and be more specific in terms of the specific information you are
requesting in relation to the bus station, then we may be able to provide
you with some information within the appropriate fees limit, subject to
any exemptions to be applied.

 

If you have any queries about this response, please do not hesitate to
contact me direct on (01642) 729696/729698 or email
[2][Middlesbrough Council request email]. Please remember to quote the reference number
shown above in any future communications.

If you are unhappy with the way your request has been handled you may ask
for an internal review within 40 days of receipt of the response. You
should write to:-

Ann-Marie Johnstone

Corporate Strategy Manager

P.O. Box 500,

Civic Centre,

Middlesbrough.

TS1 9FT

 

If you are not content with the outcome of the internal review, you have
the right to apply directly to the Information Commissioner for an
independent review. The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: -

 

Information Commissioner’s Office,
Wycliffe House,
Water Lane,
Wilmslow,
Cheshire,
SK9 5AF

Yours sincerely

 

Steph Robson

Information & Compliance Officer

 

Finance, Governance & Support

P.O. Box 500,

Civic Centre,

Middlesbrough.

TS1 9FT

Tel. 01642 729696

 

Email: [3][Middlesbrough Council request email]

 

All intellectual property rights are reserved. Trademarks, brand names,
company names, and logos are the property of Middlesbrough Council, or of
their respective owners. Reproduction, alterations, modification,
distribution, or re-publication in any format, without prior written
permission from the property owner is forbidden.

 

The Council's copyright and other intellectual property rights are
protected by UK laws and by international treaties.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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1. https://ico.org.uk/media/1198/dealing-wi...
2. mailto:[Middlesbrough Council request email]
3. mailto:[Middlesbrough Council request email]

Dear foi,

Following three reminders you respond.

I will let the ICO investigate, they have already been sent my complaint which has been acknowledged by them. I will send them your latest correspondence so they have the full picture of your appalling handling of an information request.

Yours sincerely,

Paul Whitaker

Dear foi,

I have reread your response. You state that there are about 1400 emails. I will limit my request to those emails sent to and from Sam Gilmore. This should assist you greatly.

Please can you send those ASAP

Yours sincerely,

Paul Whitaker

foi, Middlesbrough Council

1 Attachment

 

[1]cid:image001.png@01D43A2B.52358170

 

Dear Mr Whitaker

 

REF NO:013284

 

Thank you for your email, received on 21^st August 2018.  Following the
response you received to your information request ref: 013171, I note that
you have now reduced the scope of your request to include emails sent to
and from Sam Gilmore only.  I have now logged your new request under the
reference number 013284.

 

In our response dated 16^th August 2018, you were advised that if you
could be more specific about the information you are requesting i.e. in
terms of the topic/subject matter then we may be able to provide you with
some information within the appropriate fees limit, subject to any
exemptions to be applied.

 

To help me progress with your request, please can you clarify the subject
matter or search terms you wish to be included in the search relating to
Sam Gilmore.  Please note that if we do not receive appropriate
clarification of your information requirements within three months from
the date of this email, then Middlesbrough Council will consider your
request closed.

 

Please do not hesitate to contact me direct on (01642) 729696/729698 or
email [Middlesbrough Council request email] should you require any further advice or
assistance with this or any other matter.

 

Yours sincerely

Janette Anderson

Freedom of Information Officer

Strategy, Information and Governance

P.O. Box 503
Ground Floor
Town Hall
Middlesbrough
TS1 9FX

Tel.  01642 729696

Email:   [2][Middlesbrough Council request email]
 

 

All intellectual property rights are reserved.  Trademarks, brand names,
company names, and logos are the property of Middlesbrough Council, or of
their respective owners.  Reproduction, alterations, modification,
distribution, or re-publication in any format, without prior written
permission from the property owner is forbidden.

 

The Council's copyright and other intellectual property rights are
protected by UK laws and by international treaties.

 

show quoted sections

References

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2. mailto:[Middlesbrough Council request email]

Dear foi,

I do not agree with the fact that you have now started a third FOI for what is the same information request. Your decision seems manifestly wrong.

This email is further clarification to help you.

The subject is the bus station.

To try and help further - all emails to and from Sam Gilmore regarding the bus station 2017- date of first request, information emails that relates to the relocation ,demolition or a new build bus station. My first request related to reports too.

I do hope that you send the information without any delays as this has been ongoing for too long

I’m unsure why Janete Anderson has decided to treat this as a new foi when records will show Ann Marie Johnstone is in charge of this matter.
Yours sincerely,

Paul Whitaker

foi, Middlesbrough Council

Dear Mr Whitaker

I refer to your email received on 22nd August 2018. I can advise you that as your previous request reference 013171 was refused, any subsequent revised request submitted is treated as a new request under the terms of the FOIA. You have now provided further clarification in relation to your new request as detailed in your email of 22nd August 2018.

We are currently assessing the information held pertaining to the scope of your revised request and a response will be provided within 20 working days of receipt of your clarification, as allowed under the Freedom of Information Act.

Yours sincerely

Janette Anderson
Freedom of Information Officer

Strategy, Information and Governance
P.O. Box 503
Ground Floor
Town Hall
Middlesbrough
TS1 9FX

Tel.  01642 729696
Email:   [Middlesbrough Council request email]
 

All intellectual property rights are reserved.  Trademarks, brand names, company names, and logos are the property of Middlesbrough Council, or of their respective owners.  Reproduction, alterations, modification, distribution, or re-publication in any format, without prior written permission from the property owner is forbidden.

The Council's copyright and other intellectual property rights are protected by UK laws and by international treaties.

show quoted sections

Dear Middlesbrough Council,

Request 013171

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

I am writing to request an internal review of request number 013171. Your response dated 16 August 2018 states that the request was vexatious.
Your letter stated the request was a
 Burden on the Authority
And
 Disproportionate effort

You state -
Your requests centre on a single theme i.e. bus station. The phrase ‘bus
station’ or ‘media village’ or ‘TMIV is very broad and the volume of your
request has a significant burden and is very resource intensive on the
Council’s resources, diverting such resources from service delivery.

However these phrases were used to asssit further and not to be considered in isolation as it appear you have done. At no time have you offered assistance , guidance or any suggestion to assist me.

You have also failed to state what searches you have carried out to generate the 1400 emails.

There has been significant press coverage about the bus station, the media village known as TMIV and adding those to the search would have filtered your search further and reduced the number of emails etc., when also including the time period provided and the officers named.

You have also only made reference to emails only and make no reference to the reports that were also requested.

Auditors have reprimanded the council for poor project management and if project management has improved as has been claimed , then the communication requested should be within the project management and systems.

I am pleased you state that the request isn’t deliberately burdensome or oppressive

This is a genuine request for information about a very topical subject and one of great interest to the people of Middlesbrough and beyond.

I am seeking information responsibly and have tried to assist wherever possible. It appears to me that the council has thwarted the public’s right to obtain information.

Yours faithfully,

Paul Whitaker

foi, Middlesbrough Council

1 Attachment

 

Dear Mr Whitaker

 

APPEAL ACKNOWLEDGEMENT - REF NO:013374 - REQUEST REF NO:013171

 

I acknowledge that your request for an internal review is now being
processed  through the Council’s appeals procedure and a response will be
provided within 20 working days, by 11^th October 2018. 

 

Please note the officer now dealing with your enquiry is Ms Ann-Marie
Johnstone. Should you wish to contact her, you can do so at the following
address:

 

Ms Ann-Marie Johnstone

Governance and Information Manager,

P.O. Box 500
2^nd Floor
Civic Centre
Middlesbrough
TS1 9FT

 

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact me
direct on (01642) 729696 or email [Middlesbrough Council request email]  Please
remember to quote the reference number shown above in any future
communications.

 

 

Yours sincerely

Janette Anderson

Freedom of Information Officer

Strategy, Information and Governance

P.O. Box 503
Ground Floor
Town Hall
Middlesbrough
TS1 9FX

Tel.  01642 729696

Email:   [1][Middlesbrough Council request email]
 

 

All intellectual property rights are reserved.  Trademarks, brand names,
company names, and logos are the property of Middlesbrough Council, or of
their respective owners.  Reproduction, alterations, modification,
distribution, or re-publication in any format, without prior written
permission from the property owner is forbidden.

 

The Council's copyright and other intellectual property rights are
protected by UK laws and by international treaties.

 

show quoted sections

References

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1. mailto:[Middlesbrough Council request email]

foi, Middlesbrough Council

4 Attachments

 

Dear Mr Whitaker

 

APPEAL RESPONSE - REF NO: 013442 - REQUEST REF NO: 013269

I am writing to confirm that Middlesbrough Council has now conducted your
request for an internal review. A copy of the response is attached.

Yours sincerely

 

Steph Robson

Information & Compliance Officer

 

Finance, Governance & Support

P.O. Box 500,

Civic Centre,

Middlesbrough.

TS1 9FT

Tel. 01642 729696

 

Email: [1][Middlesbrough Council request email]

 
 

 

All intellectual property rights are reserved.  Trademarks, brand names,
company names, and logos are the property of Middlesbrough Council, or of
their respective owners.  Reproduction, alterations, modification,
distribution, or re-publication in any format, without prior written
permission from the property owner is forbidden.

 

The Council's copyright and other intellectual property rights are
protected by UK laws and by international treaties.

 

show quoted sections

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[Middlesbrough Council request email]

Dear Middlesbrough Council,

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

Middlesbrough Council's handling of my FOI request 'Bus Station'. Ref 013284 is unsatisfactory.

As you know the initial request commenced in June 2018 and this request should not be dealt with in isolation of all the other communications that you decided to treat as new requests.

I believe that the exemptions applied to 013284 are incorrect and hereby request an internal review

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

Yours faithfully,

Paul Whitaker

foi, Middlesbrough Council

1 Attachment

 

Dear Mr Whitaker

 

APPEAL ACKNOWLEDGEMENT - REF NO: 013618 - REQUEST REF NO:013284

 

I acknowledge that your request for an internal review is now being
processed through the Councils appeals procedure and a response will be
provided within 20 working days.   

 

Please note the officer now dealing with your enquiry is Ms Ann-Marie
Johnstone. Should you wish to contact her, you can do so at the following
address:

 

Ms Ann-Marie Johnstone

Governance and Information Manager,
P.O. Box 500
2^nd Floor
Civic Centre
Middlesbrough
TS1 9FT

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact me
direct on (01642) 729696 or email [Middlesbrough Council request email]  Please
remember to quote the reference number shown above in any future
communications.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

Janette Anderson

Freedom of Information Officer

 

 

show quoted sections

Paul Whitaker left an annotation ()

This is now being investigated by the ICO

foi, Middlesbrough Council

1 Attachment

 

Dear Mr Whitaker

 

APPEAL RESPONSE - REF NO: 013618 - REQUEST REF NO: 013284

I am writing to confirm that Middlesbrough Council has now conducted your
request for an internal review. A copy of the response is attached.

Yours sincerely

 

Steph Robson

Information Requests Coordinator

 

Finance, Governance & Support

P.O. Box 500,

Civic Centre,

Middlesbrough.

TS1 9FT

Email: [1][Middlesbrough Council request email]

 

 

All intellectual property rights are reserved. Trademarks, brand names,
company names, and logos are the property of Middlesbrough Council, or of
their respective owners. Reproduction, alterations, modification,
distribution, or re-publication in any format, without prior written
permission from the property owner is forbidden.

 

The Council's copyright and other intellectual property rights are
protected by UK laws and by international treaties.

 

 

show quoted sections

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[Middlesbrough Council request email]

Paul Whitaker left an annotation ()

The ICO are currently investigating but have already issued a formal decision notice because of the council’s failure to respond to the information request within 20 days.

foi, Middlesbrough Council

Dear Mr Whitaker

 

I refer to the ICO decision notice (FER0803872) issued on 4^th July 2019.

 

Please accept my sincere apologies for the delay in providing the
information to you. Unfortunately a member of staff has had to take
unexpected leave and this has delayed the matter.  I can advise you that
the information is being prepared and a response will be provided to you,
week commencing 19^th August 2019.

 

Yours sincerely

Janette Anderson

Information Requests Officer

Strategy, Information and Governance

P.O. Box 500
Civic Centre
Middlesbrough
TS1 9FT

Email:   [1][Middlesbrough Council request email]
 

 

All intellectual property rights are reserved.  Trademarks, brand names,
company names, and logos are the property of Middlesbrough Council, or of
their respective owners.  Reproduction, alterations, modification,
distribution, or re-publication in any format, without prior written
permission from the property owner is forbidden.

 

The Council's copyright and other intellectual property rights are
protected by UK laws and by international treaties.

 

show quoted sections

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[Middlesbrough Council request email]

We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Paul Whitaker please sign in and let everyone know.