Communications with Cheshire East or Mr Andrew Kelly re s56

GLASS made this Freedom of Information request to Powys County Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence. Contact us if you think it should be reopened.

The request was partially successful.

Dear Powys Council,

Q 1
Has Powys County Council had any communications of any type, with (to or from) Cheshire East Council, or with Mr Andrew Kelly, Highways Asset Technician in connection with any highway matters concerning a Summons under HA1980 s56, or an Appeal in connection with highway repairs that Powys CC has been dealing with, or requested or been given any information or advice or assistance in connection with highway disrepair?

Mr Andrew Kelly has provided the email address for any questions relating to an article he authored on the subject, or about the case, of : fforddlas1966 at btinternet.com

If so, please provide copies.

Yours faithfully,

GLASS obo a member.

Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services), Powys County Council

 
 
 

Cyfarwyddwr: Newid a Rheoli Gwybodaeth/
Llywodraethu Information Management
Director:  Change and Uned / Unit 29
Governance Ffordd Ddole / Ddole Road
Nick Philpott Llandrindod Wells
Powys LD1 6DF
If calling please ask for / Os yn galw gofynnwch am
 
Tel / Ffôn:  01597 827512      
Fax / Ffacs:  01597 825663     
Email/Llythyru electronig:
[Powys Council request email]     
Our ref / Ein cyf:  E2014-2603 
Date / Dyddiad:   2 June 2014

 
Person Dealing: Victoria Schofield
Direct Dial:            01597 827515
 
FREEDOM of INFORMATION ACT 2000
Reference No: E2014-2603
 
Dear Glass,
 
Thank you for your request for information, received at this office on the
23rd May 2014, in which you requested details of the following:
 
        Correspondence re HA 1980 S56
 
The above is a summary of your request. The full details of the
information sought is provided to the officer to whom the request is
tasked.
 
Your request will now be considered and you will receive a response within
the statutory timescale of 20 working days as defined by the Act, subject
to the information not being exempt or containing a reference to a third
party. In some circumstances Powys County Council may be unable to achieve
this deadline. If this is likely you will be informed and given a revised
time-scale at the earliest opportunity.
 
There may be a fee payable for the retrieval, collation and provision of
the information you request. If this is the case you will be informed and
the 20 working day timescale will be suspended until we receive payment
from you. If you choose not to make a payment then your request will
remain unanswered.
 
Some requests may also require either full or partial transference to
another public authority in order to answer your query in the fullest
possible way. Again, you will be informed if this is the case.
 
The due date for responding to this request for information is the 23rd
June 2014.
 
Should you need to discuss this further please contact the officer dealing
with your request as identified at the beginning of this letter or
Information Management on 01597 827512 / 7513.
 
I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your interest in
Powys County Council.
 
Yours sincerely,
 
 
Victoria Schofield
Records and Compliance Assistant

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Dear Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services),

Is there a reason why this has not been responded to promptly?

It is now well in excess or the maximum period for a reply by law.

In light of the dramatic revelations in https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/m... this is now of greater significance.

Yours sincerely,

GLASS

Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services), Powys County Council

 
I am now on annual leave and will be returning to work on the 1st July.
 
If you require a response during this period please contact:
Complaints - Jonathan Newland, Complaints Officer -
[email address]<mailto:[email address]> Tel:
01597 827514
Information Management - Bronwyn Curnow, Registration Services Manager -
[email address]<mailto:[email address]> Tel: 01597
827512
I will reply as soon as possible upon my return.

Viki Schofield
Complaints Administrator / Records and Compliance Assistant

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Dear Powys Council,

Did you return to work yesterday, 1/7/14?

Yours faithfully,

GLASS
n.b.
"The response to your request has been delayed. You can say that, by law, the authority should normally have responded promptly and by 23 June 2014."

Dear Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services),

You did say:

The due date for responding to this request for information is the 23rd
June 2014.

May I remind you it is the 4 July'

Van you please chase for a reply, urgently.

Yours sincerely,

GLASS

GLASS left an annotation ()

The idiot that wrote 'Van you please chase for a reply' has been sacked, they will write 'Can you please chase for a reply' next time.

But a reply would still be appreciated by all.

Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services), Powys County Council

Dear Glass,

Many apologies for not responding to your earlier email.
Unfortunately the section to which we allocated your enquiry have not yet collated the information you have requested.
As you are aware from my automatic email I have been away from work. Over this period and during last week my colleague has been contacting the relevant sections in order to obtain a response for you. As a result we have been waiting to contact you until we had some information to give you.

I regret the delay you have experienced with this request. I acknowledge that Powys County Council has failed in its obligation under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, to provide you with a response to your request within the statutory timescale of 20 working days. Please accept my apologies for this and for any inconvenience this may have caused.

I shall again be contacting the relevant section today and reminding them of their obligation to respond to your request in a timely manner. In the meantime I thank you for your patience and please be assured that upon receipt of the relevant information from the section we will process and pass your response on to you as soon as possible.

Best wishes & many thanks,

Viki

Victoria Schofield
Complaints Administrator /
Records & Compliance Assistant

Unit 29 Ddole Road Enterprise Park /
Uned 29 Parc Menter Parc-y-Ddol,
Ddole Road,
Llandrindod Wells,
Powys
LD1 6DF

Tel: 01597 82 7515

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Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services),

Dear Viki,

Thank you for chasing the department, they are very tardy.

Would you also let them know replies should be given promptly, rather than in a 'timely manner'.

"The legal meaning of the term timely must, in a number of situations, be determined on the basis of the facts and circumstances of each individual case. Courts have extensive discretion in determining whether a particular party has acted in a timely manner in filing papers, serving notices, or bringing motions in a legal action."

So 'timely' is 20 days, but this is not what the Act says, it is PROMPTLY, and in any case within 20 working days.

Section 10(1) states that an authority must comply with
section 1(1) of the Act ‘…promptly and in any event not later
than the twentieth working day following the date of receipt.’

http://ico.org.uk/~/media/documents/libr...

In particular see Para 15, 15, & 21 - 25:-

"Requirement to respond promptly

21. The obligation to respond promptly means that an authority should comply with a request as soon as is reasonably practicable.

22. Whilst this is linked to the obligation to respond within 20 working days, it should be treated as a separate requirement.

23. An authority will therefore need to both respond promptly and within 20 working days in order to comply with section 10(1).

24. Authorities should regard the 20 working day limit as a ‘long stop’, in other words the latest possible date on which they may issue a response.

25. It also follows that an authority which provides its response close to, or on, the final day of the 20 working day limit ought to be able to both account for, and justify, the length of time taken to comply with the request."

Therefore would you please ask the department not just to "to (a) both account for, and (b) justify, the length of time taken to comply with the request", but (c) why it failed to comply with the law.

By delaying replies to the limit, or beyond as here, they create extra work for you, themselves and us.

Yours sincerely,

GLASS

Freedom of Information Queries (CSP - Generic), Powys County Council

Dear Glass,

Thank you for your comments, I have passed them on to the relevant service area.

Best wishes & many thanks,

Viki

Victoria Schofield
Complaints Administrator /
Records & Compliance Assistant

Unit 29 Ddole Road Enterprise Park /
Uned 29 Parc Menter Parc-y-Ddol,
Ddole Road,
Llandrindod Wells,
Powys
LD1 6DF

Tel: 01597 82 7515

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Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services), Powys County Council

 
 
 

Cyfarwyddwr: Newid a Rheoli Gwybodaeth/
Llywodraethu Information Management
Director:  Change and Uned / Unit 29
Governance Ffordd Ddole / Ddole Road
Nick Philpott Llandrindod Wells
Powys LD1 6DF
If calling please ask for / Os yn galw gofynnwch am
 
Tel / Ffôn:  01597 827512      
Fax / Ffacs:  01597 825663     
Email/Llythyru electronig:
[Powys Council request email]     
Our ref / Ein cyf:  E2014-2603 
Date / Dyddiad:   8 July 2014

 
Person Dealing: Victoria Schofield
Direct Dial:            01597 827515
 
FREEDOM of INFORMATION ACT 2000
Reference No: E2014-2603
 
 
Dear Glass,
 
Thank you for your request for information dated the 23rd May 2014
concerning Correspondence re HA1980 S56.
 
This is to inform you that your request has been considered and I can
confirm that the answer to your query is yes.
 
Powys County Council have had communications with Mr Andrew Kelly,
Highways Asset Technician from Cheshire East Council. This was an exchange
on emails on the 1st and 2nd of May 2013 and was in connection with
attending a court case and a separate HRWG meeting. There is no other
information within the emails which would serve to indicate the nature of
the court case or HRWG meeting.
 
I trust we have met your information requirements at this time. We believe
that this request is now complete and shall be closed immediately. Should
any further information be requested regarding this topic, a separate
request will need to be submitted.
 
I would like to this opportunity to thank you for your interest in Powys
County Council.
 
Yours sincerely,
 
Victoria Schofield
Records and Compliance Assistant
 
If you are dissatisfied with the service you have received in relation to
your request and wish to make a complaint, please contact Information
Management. Our complaints procedure is available on request or on our
website.
 
If you are still not satisfied following this, you can make an appeal to
the Information Commissioner, who is the statutory regulator. The
Information Commissioner can be contacted at:
 
Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Telephone 01625 545 700
[1]www.informationcommissioner.org.uk
 

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References

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

Dear Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services),

This is another absolute crock.

"This is to inform you that your request
has been considered and
I can confirm that the answer to your query is yes.

Powys County Council have had communications with Mr Andrew Kelly,
Highways Asset Technician from Cheshire East Council. This was an exchange on emails on the 1st and 2nd of May 2013
and was in connection with
attending a court case and a
separate HRWG meeting. There is no other
information within the emails which would serve to indicate the nature of the court case or HRWG meeting."

The 23 May 2014 REQUEST CONTINUED:-

"If so, please provide copies."

This is not a 'reply' nor is it a 'Refusal Notice'

It is just wasting time. Please supply the information requested in accordance with the FoIA 2000.

Yesterday further information came to us of certain communications to Mr Kelly at the HRWG. We expect that to be included within the reply. (i.e. not 'Concealed')

The reply has also not answered the request to
"(a) both account for, and
(b) justify, the length of time taken to comply (or rather not comply) with the request",
(c) why it failed to comply with the law (even after 4 prompts), as per ICO guidance.

After this extended, excessive period of time, all that has been done is to comply with the first requirement of s1 of the FoIA2000, "the duty to confirm".

Please read the ICO's guidance on this http://ico.org.uk/for_organisations/guid...

As recently as the 30 May 2014 Helen Dolman understood this in a Review (https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/c...), writing:-

"Section 17 of the Act refers to refusal notices

(1)A public authority which, in relation to any request for information,
is to any extent relying on a claim that any provision of Part II relating
to the duty to confirm or deny is relevant to the request or on a claim
that information is exempt information must, within the time for complying
with section 1(1), give the applicant a notice which—

(a)states that fact,

(b)specifies the exemption in question, and

(c)states (if that would not otherwise be apparent) why the exemption applies.

(3)A public authority which, in relation to any request for information,
is to any extent relying on a claim that subsection (1)(b) or (2)(b) of section 2 applies must, either in the notice under subsection (1) or in a
separate notice given within such time as is reasonable in the circumstances, state the reasons for claiming—

(a)that, in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exclusion of the duty to confirm or deny outweighs the
public interest in disclosing whether the authority holds the information,
or

(b)that, in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the
information."

Please note the word "must" is MANDATORY, in "must, within the time for complying with section 1(1)" above.

We appreciate the exchange of emails of 1st & 2nd of May 2013 to which you refer, contain banter that may be uncomfortable to Powys, but that is not a reason for not supplying.

Yours sincerely,

GLASS

GLASS left an annotation ()

For information;
To the ICO.

I wish to lodge a complaint re Powys County Council's failure to respond to an FoI request, and also to even 'confirm or deny' until 6 weeks after the request submitted. The request was made on behalf of the Green Lane Association (GLASS) via WDTK on 23/5/14:-
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/c...

An Ackn. received 2/6/14 Ref E2014-2603

Chased for a reply 27/6/14, 2/7/14, 4/7/14, and 8/7/14.

Finally, a 'final reply/now closed' was received on 8/7/14. "FREEDOM of INFORMATION ACT 2000
Reference No: E2014-2603​"
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/c...

All this did was confirm they had the requested information. (An email exchange 1 & 2 May 2013). They did not supply it as requested, nor issue a 'Refusal Notice'. They write:-

"This was an exchange on (sic) emails on the 1st and 2nd of May 2013 and was in connection with attending a court case and a separate HRWG meeting. There is no other information within the emails which would serve to indicate the nature of the court case or HRWG meeting."

A review has not been requested, as it appears a Complaint of failure to supply information within 20 days may be made direct to the ICO without the added delay of a Review. It appears no Public Interest Test has been conducted, yet some kind of arbitrary decision has been made that "no other information within the emails which would serve to indicate the nature of the court case or HRWG meeting" leading to the non supply of non-exempt information.

Freedom of Information Queries (CSP - Generic), Powys County Council

Dear Glass

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000
Reference No: F2014-2603

Person Dealing: Victoria Schofield
Direct Dial: 01597 827515

I regret that you have expressed dissatisfaction in the response provided by Powys County Council in respect of your recent request for information concerning Correspondence re HA1980 S56.

Your complaint has been referred to the Senior Information Risk Owner for review, in accordance with the Council’s Environmental Information Regulations Complaints Policy.

Should you wish to discuss your complaint further, please contact the officer dealing with your request as identified above.

Yours sincerely,

Victoria Schofield
Records & Compliance Assistant

Unit 29 Ddole Road Enterprise Park /
Uned 29 Parc Menter Parc-y-Ddol,
Ddole Road,
Llandrindod Wells,
Powys
LD1 6DF

Tel: 01597 82 7515

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Dear Freedom of Information Queries (CSP - Generic),

We note this is now Reference No: F2014-2603, whereas earlier it was Reference No: E2014-2603. Meaning it really is FoI rather than EIR? (Which would be a nonsense)

We did not ask for a Review, this seems to simply be a play for more time.

The original request has not been supplied, and no 'Refusal Notice' has been issued. So besides the review, the tasked client department should, in parallel, be requested to supply what was asked.

One department does seem to be letting the FoI duty, and the Council down in not providing satisfactory, timely replies, thus risking special monitoring "over concerns about the timeliness of their responses to Freedom of Information requests."

The ICO also say:-

"The authorities were selected as they failed to respond to 85% of FOI requests within the time limit of 20 working days or had exceeded the time limit by a significant margin on numerous occasions."

Yours sincerely,

GLASS

Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services), Powys County Council

 
 
 

Cyfarwyddwr: Newid a Rheoli Gwybodaeth/
Llywodraethu Information Management
Director:  Change and Uned / Unit 29
Governance Ffordd Ddole / Ddole Road
Nick Philpott Llandrindod Wells
Powys LD1 6DF
If calling please ask for / Os yn galw gofynnwch am
 
Tel / Ffôn:  01597 827512      
Fax / Ffacs:  01597 825663     
Email/Llythyru electronig:
[Powys Council request email]     
Our ref / Ein cyf:  E2014-2603 
Date / Dyddiad:   11 July 2014

 
Person Dealing: Victoria Schofield
Direct Dial:            01597 827515
 
FREEDOM of INFORMATION ACT 2000
Reference No: E2014-2603
 
Dear Glass,
 
Thank you for your email dated the 9th July 2014 in which you expressed
your dissatisfaction at the response to your query (E2014-2603) which had
been provided on the 8th July 2014.
 
We had originally sent this request for a review but the correspondence
concerned has now been made available to us in full and so I am pleased to
be able to attach a copy below:
 
From: KELLY, Andrew [[1]mailto:[email address]]
Sent: 02 May 2013 08:39
To: Mark Stafford-Tolley (CSP - Countryside Services)
Subject: RE: Marsden v Powys CC
 
Hello Mark,
 
Thanks for your email and update. You will be pleased to hear that last
night not only did I book the day off but also have booked my train ticket
too. The train gets to Merthyr at 09:30 so hopefully the Court is within
walking distance and I will be with you very soon after 09:30. If you have
any ideas as to the location of the Court from the station this would be
very much appreciated. Do you have a map of the location? I think it
should be a very interesting case and keeping my fingers very firmly
crossed for Powys too.
 
Incidentally FYI XXXX is potentially coming to the HRWG meeting, he has
not committed himself, however has certainly showed great interest.
 
I look forward to seeing you next Wednesday.
 
Andrew.
 
Andrew Kelly
Technician | Network Intelligence & Business Support Cheshire East
Highways Direct Line: 01270 686340 | Fax: 01270 371158 Please consider the
environment before printing this e-mail.
Follow us on  or visit the Service Information Centre
 
 
 

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Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services),

Dear Viki,

Thank you for this little bit more 'Information'.

On 8/7/14 you write:
"Powys County Council have had communications with Mr Andrew Kelly, Highways Asset Technician from Cheshire East Council. This was an exchange on(sic) emails on the 1st and 2nd of May 2013 and was in connection with attending a court case and a separate HRWG meeting. There is no other information within the emails which would serve to indicate the nature of the court case or HRWG meeting.

I trust we have met your information requirements at this time. We believe that this request is now complete and shall be closed immediately."

a) It is not unfortunately complete, nor have our information requirements been met as of 8/7/14, nor as of 11/7/14.

b) In your subsequent reply, dated 11/7/14 you state "an exchange on emails on the 1st and 2nd of May 2013". Yet you copy only ONE email (02/May/2013 08:39). This does not constitute an "exchange" of emails.

c) It starts with "Thanks for your email and update."

Both the words "your email", and "update" suggest the probability there were earlier email(s)'.

Also you say "within the emails", the plural suggesting 'more than one'.

Could you therefore remind the department tasked, of the criminal penalties under s77 of concealing or hiding information requested, to ensure a speedy full and accurate reply.

d) This is merely the confirmation you hold the requested information, and should have been given PROMPTLY after 23/5/14.

e) Please supply a copy of all of these emails, some of which may fall outside the 1st & 2nd May 2013, and indicate which email address was used by Mr Kelly, ie fforddlas1966 (X) btinternet.com or andrew.kelly (X) cheshireeast.gov.uk or some other.

(This clearly was from his 'Council'/Ringway Jacobs' office address as confirmed in the email copy you supply.)

f) Please supply the original requested information "in connection with any highway matters concerning a Summons under HA1980 s56, or an Appeal in connection
with highway repairs that Powys CC has been dealing with, or requested or been given any information or advice or assistance in connection with highway disrepair?" from 1 July 2012 to 23 May 2014.

g) The reason for the email address is vital as this contradicts the reply to an FoI on Cheshire East Council on 10/6/14 (Q1) https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/c.... They claim (apparently incorrectly):-

"RE : FOI CASE REFERENCE 808417
Q 1

Has CEC had any communications of any type, with (to or from) Powys County Council
in connection with any highway matters concerning a Summons under HA1980 s56, or an
Appeal in connection with highway repairs that Powys CC has been dealing with, or given any
information or advice or assistance in connection with highway disrepair?

No.

If so, please provide copies.

Not applicable – see above."

Yours sincerely,

GLASS

Dear Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services),

We have become aware of another email, that Powys CC have on record, sent from Mr Marsden to Mr Kelly, dated 21/5/13 18:19, Subject: Powys CC v Marsden case.

It is understood this was not cc'd to Powys, therefore it seems highly likely this was forwarded to Powys, by Mr Kelly. Therefore falls within this FoI request.

Whilst this forwarding does not seem to be an issue itself, the fact is there seems to be another series of emails that have not been properly disclosed, as to how and why this was received, and how it was replied to, between Cheshire East and Powys.

Additionally there are further communications, we understand, between Mr Kelly around the 13/6/13 and Mr Stafford-Tolley, at the very least.

Yours sincerely,

GLASS

Dear Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services),

For clarity, can you confirm this is currently under review please?

Yours sincerely,

GLASS

Victoria Schofield (CSP - Customer Services), Powys County Council

Dear Glass

 

Following notification from the ICO we are going to carry out an internal
review on your Freedom of Information Request number F2014-2603. I regret
that you have expressed dissatisfaction in the response provided by Powys
County Council in respect of your recent request for information
concerning Correspondence re HA1980 S56.

 

Your complaint has been referred to the Senior Information Risk Owner for
review in accordance with the Council Environmental Information
Regulations /Freedom of Information)Complaints Policy.

 

Should you wish to discuss your complaint further please contact the
officer dealing with your request as outlined below.

 

Person Dealing : Helen Dolman

Direct Dial: 01597 826440

 

 

Best wishes & many thanks,

 

Viki

 

Victoria Schofield

Records & Compliance Assistant

 

Unit 29 Ddole Road Enterprise Park /

Uned 29 Parc Menter Parc-y-Ddol,

Ddole Road,

Llandrindod Wells,

Powys

LD1 6DF

 

Tel: 01597 82 7515

 

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Helen Dolman (CSP - ICT), Powys County Council

2 Attachments

  • Attachment

    EIR E2014 2603 Correspondence re HA1980 S56 second response.html

    12K Download

  • Attachment

    FW EIR E2014 2603 Correspondence re HA1980 S56 reminder.txt

    4K Download View as HTML

Freedom of Information Act 2000

Request: F-2014-2603

 

Officer Dealing: Helen Dolman, Information Governance Manager

Direct Dial: 01597 826400

 

Date: 8th August 2014

 

Dear GLASS

 

Further to your request for an internal review of Powys County Council’s
handling of your recent Freedom of Information request on relation to
communications with Cheshire East Council or Mr Andrew Kelly in
connections with highways matters concerning a summons under HA1980 s 56.

 

Having considered your information request, I find that

•        there was a delay in responding to your request and

•        there was a misunderstanding over the provision of requested
information, and

•        that the information emailed to you has not shown fully on the
website “What Do They Know.com”

 

I would like to take this opportunity to apologise of behalf of the
Council for the delay in responding to the request and any
misunderstanding that have occurred, and clearly explain our reasons
below.

 

Request

 

On the 23rd May 2014 the following request was received by Powys County
Council.

 

Q 1

Has Powys County Council had any communications of any type, with (to or
from) Cheshire East Council, or with Mr Andrew Kelly, Highways Asset
Technician in connection with any highway matters concerning a Summons
under HA1980 s56, or an Appeal in connection with highway repairs that
Powys CC has been dealing with, or requested or been given any information
or advice or assistance in connection with highway disrepair?

 

Mr Andrew Kelly has provided the email address for any questions relating
to an article he authored on the subject, or about the case, of :
fforddlas1966 at btinternet.com

 

If so, please provide copies.

 

On the 2nd June 2014 the Council acknowledged your request as E-2014-2603
under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOI), advising that the latest
due date of a response would be the 23rd June 2014

 

It is normal to reference such requests with an F not an E, as F reference
number indicate a Freedom of Information Request, E indicates
Environmental Information Regulations requests, and D Data Protection Act
requests.

 

Further to reminders from yourself to the Council, an initial response was
issued 8th July 2014, only disclosing the affirmative, and misunderstood
information in relation to his role and employment.

 

Powys County Council have had communications with Mr Andrew Kelly,
Highways Asset Technician from Cheshire East Council. This was an exchange
on emails on the 1st and 2nd of May 2013 and was in connection with
attending a court case and a separate HRWG meeting. There is no other
information within the emails which would serve to indicate the nature of
the court case or HRWG meeting.

 

Following your response to the initial disclosure an officer realised that
the copies of the communications had also been requested and these were
then issued on the 11th July 2014, and also questioning whether you wished
to continue with an internal review, despite your comments of the 9th
July.

 

Since the email issued was not fully disclosed on the website then I have
attached a copy of the relevant email evidencing the provision of the
information requested.

 

Since your first email of the 12th July 2014 indicated that your
requirements had not been met, the issue had already been referred to
myself for internal review, even though your annotation on WDTK dated 9th
July 2014 to the ICO indicated that a review was not requested.

 

The ICO contacted Powys County Council on the 15th July 2014 advising of
your complaint on the basis of a failure to respond within the statutory
timescale of 20 working days, and asking that the matter be considered
under internal review.

 

Investigation

 

In investigating the handling and decisions made in respect of this
request I have established the following;

 

The request referred to “Highways” therefore initially the request was
tasked to the Highways Department of Powys County Council,

 

Search of Highways records, both electronically and manually did not
establish any relevant recorded information.

 

Due to officers involvement in other information requests at the time in
addition to their normal duties all impacted on the Council’s ability to
respond within timescales.

 

It was only when officers established that there was a high probability
that the individual could be involved in public rights of way rather than
transportation highways that the request was re-tasked to another
department, who forwarded information held that day.

 

The disclosure was made but an officer failed to notice that provision of
copies of any such correspondence was also included within the request.

 

When making the disclosure an officer copied details provided by you in
the request, about Mr Kelly’s role and employer into the disclosure and so
provided information which the Council does not actually have recorded.

 

Upon realisation of the mistake in failing to include copies of emails the
second disclosure was made, however only half of the information provided
appeared on the WDTK web pages.

 

Officers redacted the personal identifiable information included within
one of the emails but failed to provide a relevant refusal notice.

 

In addition consideration has been given to the disclosure of the personal
data, and whether this was fair and lawful, under the terms of the first
principle of the Data Protection Act 1998.

 

Legislation

 

Section 10 of the Freedom of Information Act 2014 refers to time for
compliance with request.

(1) Subject to subsections (2) and (3), a public authority must comply
with section 1(1) promptly and in any event not later than the twentieth
working day following the date of receipt.

 

Section 17 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 refers to refusal
notices

(1)A public authority which, in relation to any request for information,
is to any extent relying on a claim that any provision of Part II relating
to the duty to confirm or deny is relevant to the request or on a claim
that information is exempt information must, within the time for complying
with section 1(1), give the applicant a notice which—

(a)states that fact,

(b)specifies the exemption in question, and

(c)states (if that would not otherwise be apparent) why the exemption
applies.

 

First principle of the Data Protection Act 1998 relates to the processing,
including disclosure of personal data.

Personal data shall be processed fairly and lawfully and, in particular,
shall not be processed unless-

(a)at least one of the conditions in Schedule 2 is met, and.

(b)in the case of sensitive personal data, at least one of the conditions
in Schedule 3 is also met.

 

Findings

 

The Council has already apologised for its failure to comply with its
obligations under section 10 of the Act to respond within the statutory
timescale of 20 working days, this is due to pressures of work on staff
and does not indicate any malevolent intentions of the Council or its
officers, nor your accusation in relation to the department of the Council
in that “they are very tardy”

 

The Council, and the officers involved are quite aware of their
obligations under Section 10 of the Act, and make every effort to comply.

 

In addition when making this response an officer copied details of your
request instead of actually providing that which the Council had recorded;
in that the information recorded by Powys County Council did not indicate
that Mr Kelly was a Highways Asset Technician from Cheshire East Council,
but a Technician, with Network & Business Support, Cheshire East Highways.

 

The email address [email address] would indicate
that this is not a local government email address.

 

When providing the initial response officers genuinely missed the part of
the request asking for copies of any correspondence, for which they have
apologised, and so it is your opinion that this was “another absolute
crock”

 

The second disclosure rectified these issues.

 

The failure of the second disclosure to appear in its entirety on the What
do they know.com web site, is outside of the control of Powys County
Council, and as such the information held was provided, and the majority
of the comments within your email 12th July 2014 have been addressed.

 

Whilst the officer originally redacted third party information in the
second response they failed to explain the exemption being applied and the
reasons for this, and as such this is a failure under section 17 of the
Act.

 

However the Council has reconsidered and the information is supplied
within the attached.

 

Further requests for information, and or comments have been raised by
yourself during this process:-

•        Email 9th July 2014 “Yesterday further information came to us of
certain communications to Mr Kelly at HRWG. We expect that to be included
within the reply (i.e. not concealed)”. In response to these comments
further requests were made as to whether any additional information was
held by the Council. No other information has been established as being
recorded by the Council.

•        Second email 9th July 2014 “We did not ask for a review, this
seems to simply be a play for more time” .This is not a request for
information but an opinion.

•        Email 12th July 2014 “Could you remind the department tasked, of
the criminal penalties under s77 of concealing or hiding information
requested, to ensure a speedy and accurate reply” – The Council and its
staff are aware of the offence under section 77 of the Act

(1)Where— .

(a)a request for information has been made to a public authority, and .

(b)under section 1 of this Act or section 7 of the Data Protection Act
1998, the applicant would have been entitled (subject to payment of any
fee) to communication of any information in accordance with that section,

any person to whom this subsection applies is guilty of an offence if he
alters, defaces, blocks, erases, destroys or conceals any record held by
the public authority, with the intention of preventing the disclosure by
that authority of all, or any part, of the information to the
communication of which the applicant would have been entitled.

•        Email 12th July 2014 “Please supply the original requested
information “in connection with any highway matters concerning a Summons
under HA1980, or an Appeal in connection with highways repairs that Powys
CC has been dealing with, or requested or been given any information or
advice or assistance in connection with highway disrepair?” from 1 July
2012 to 23 May 2014” – That text in italics was not part of the original
request.

•        Second email 12th July 2014 “We have become aware of another
email, that Powys CC have on record, sent from Mr Marsden to Mr Kelly,
dated 21/5/13 18:19 Subject: Powys CC V Marsden Case” It has not be
established that this email is recorded by Powys County Council, and the
subsequent comments in relation as to how Powys may or may not have come
into possession of any email fall outside the remit of the Freedom of
Information Act 2000, since they are your opinion.

•        Second email 12th July 2014 “Additionally there are further
communications, we understand, between Mr Kelly around the 13/6/13 and Mr
Stafford-Tolley, at the very least.” This request seems to contradict your
earlier email that day, but as previously stated it has not been
established that any other communications are recorded by Powys County
Council.

 

I trust we have met your requirements with a satisfactory explanation as
to the Council’s late response to your original request, and subsequent
questions provided to the Council.

 

A copy of this response and the attached email will be furnished to the
ICO as requested in their emails of the 15th July 2014.

 

Should you remain dissatisfied with the service you have received from
Powys County Council you have the opportunity to continue your appeal to
the Information Commissioner, who is the statutory regulator. The
Information Commissioner can be contacted at:

 

Information Commissioner’s Office

Wycliffe House

Water Lane

Wilmslow

Cheshire

SK9 5AF

Telephone 01625 545 700

www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk

 

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

 

Helen Dolman

Information Governance Manager 

Cyngor Sir Powys County Council

Ffôn/Tel: 01597 826400

 

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Dear Powys Council,

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

I am writing to confirm the request for an internal review of Powys Council's handling of my FOI request 'Communications with Cheshire East or Mr Andrew Kelly re s56'.

You write

"In light of this I would like to ask you if you are content with the information supplied or if you would still like this to be sent for review.

I trust we have met your information requirements at this time. We believe that this request is now complete and shall be closed immediately. Should any further information be requested regarding this topic, a separate request will need to be submitted."

1) YES. We would like this to be sent for a review, for the reason this is that it does appear to be complete. The original request for Information was "Has Powys County Council had any communications OF ANY TYPE. . . .".
The information provided (copied below) states "I still have not heard about times but we are definitely going to court. If you wish to attend . . . .". It is quite obvious this is not the FIRST communications between Mr Kelly and Mr Stafford-Tolley on this subject.

2) The original request was unduly delayed. It also stated a "due date", the information should be provided promptly, not AT the maximum time.

3) It is surely presumptuous to say the request 'shall be closed' after asking if we want a review (as above)?

The attachment stated:-
"-----Original Message-----
From: KELLY, Andrew [mailto:[email address]]
Sent: 02 May 2013 08:39
To: Mark Stafford-Tolley (CSP - Countryside Services)
Subject: RE: Marsden v Powys CC

Hello Mark,

Thanks for your email and update. You will be pleased to hear that last night not only did I book the day off but also have booked my train ticket too. The train gets to Merthyr at 09:30 so hopefully the Court is within walking distance and I will be with you very soon after 09:30. If you have any ideas as to the location of the Court from the station this would be very much appreciated. Do you have a map of the location? I think it should be a very interesting case and keeping my fingers very firmly crossed for Powys too.

Incidentally FYI Jont is potentially coming to the HRWG meeting, he has not committed himself, however has certainly showed great interest.

I look forward to seeing you next Wednesday.

Andrew.

Andrew Kelly
Technician | Network Intelligence & Business Support Cheshire East Highways Direct Line: 01270 686340 | Fax: 01270 371158 Please consider the environment before printing this e-mail.
Follow us on or visit the Service Information Centre

-----Original Message-----
From: Mark Stafford-Tolley (CSP - Countryside Services) [mailto:[email address]]
Sent: 01 May 2013 19:43
To: KELLY, Andrew
Subject: Marsden v Powys CC

Hi Andrew,

I still have not heard about times but we are definitely going to court.
If you wish to attend then suggest 0930 on 8th at Merthyr crown court.
Thanks,

Mark"

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

Yours faithfully,

GLASS

Helen Dolman (CSP - ICT), Powys County Council

Dear GLASS

 

In reply to your letter of the 11^th August with question 1 – 3 please
find below our response.

 

1) Our last correspondence does not ask if you are content with the
information supplied or if you would still like this to be sent for
review. This sentence was in the second response email issued 11th July
2014, which did not appear in its entirety on What do they know.com web
pages.

 

You were informed on the 17th July that your request had been referred for
internal review, and that the ICO had requested that the request be
considered under internal review.

 

Whilst you refer to communications of any type the Council has advised
that it has not been established that any other communications are
recorded by Powys County Council. Any face to face, telephone or videoing
conference or conversations would, in all likelihood not be recorded.  

 

2) Our response of 8th August 2014 apologised for the delay and provided
an explanation has to why this occurred.

 

3) Whether it is presumptuous of the Council to advise that a request is
closed at the bottom of its letters is matter of opinion, and the Freedom
of Information Act provides a general right of access to information held
by a public authority and not the provision of opinion. Therefore your
question is outside the scope of the Council’s Freedom of Information
processes.

 

My response and a copy of this email will be provided to the ICO in
relation to the complaint that you have raised with them.

 

Regards

Helen Dolman

Information Governance Manager 

Cyngor Sir Powys County Council

Ffôn/Tel: 01597 826400

 

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