Composition of council tax summons and liability order costs

The request was partially successful.

Neil Gilliatt (Account suspended)

Dear North East Lincolnshire Council,

The following indicates when each change occurred in the composition of the council tax summons and liability order.

2000 / 2001 – Summons £10.00 / Liability Order £32.50
2001 / 2002 – Summons £10.00 / Liability Order £35.00
2002 / 2003 – Summons £15.00 / Liability Order £35.00
2004 / 2005 – Summons £30.00 / Liability Order £25.00
2006 / 2007 – Summons £32.00 / Liability Order £25.00
2011 / 2012 – Summons £70.00 / Liability Order £0.00

Q1. Please supply all information you hold to justify each change, for example the reason for the change in the composition of the two charges, and increases.

Included in this information would be cabinet documents or similar that would have been necessary to propose the changes and subsequently agree and implement them.

Q2. From the period 2000 to date, please supply all information relating to cost cutting measures the council has taken to reduce the costs incurred in issuing summonses and obtaining liability orders. This would include introduction of any new technology or merging or sharing recourses. Again, please supply any cabinet documents or similar.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Gilliatt

PPD - FOI, North East Lincolnshire Council

Dear Mr Gilliatt

I am pleased to acknowledge your request for information, which has been allocated the reference number 2551/1213.

Your request has been passed to the relevant department for processing and you can expect your response within the 20 working day limit. If it will take us longer than 20 working days to respond to you, we will inform you of this and provide you with the expected date for receiving a response.

Further information about how we will deal with your Freedom of Information requests is available on our website at: http://www.nelincs.gov.uk/council/the-co....

Please feel free to contact me if you require any further information or assistance quoting the reference number above.

Yours sincerely

Freedom of Information Officer
North East Lincolnshire Council

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PPD - FOI, North East Lincolnshire Council

7 Attachments

Dear Mr Gilliatt
 
Thank you for your information request, reference number 2551/1213. I wish
to confirm that North East Lincolnshire Council holds the following
information.
 
     Q1. Please supply all information you hold to justify each change,
     for example the reason for the change in the composition of the two
     charges, and increases.
 
     Included in this information would be cabinet documents or similar
     that would have been necessary to propose the changes and
     subsequently agree and implement them.
 
Please find the information we hold regarding changes in the composition
of charges.
 
Please find attached Cabinet reports and minutes covering changes in
2001/02 and 2002/03. Also attached are the minutes of the Council meeting
held on February 17th 2011 along with the budget report and relevant
appendix as the 2011/12 change was agreed as part of the budget and a
particular savings proposal (BS10 within the Appendix document).
 
     Q2. From the period 2000 to date, please supply all information
     relating to cost cutting measures the council has taken to reduce
     the costs incurred in issuing summonses and obtaining liability
     orders. This would include introduction of any new technology or
     merging or sharing recourses. Again, please supply any cabinet
     documents or similar.
 
We are unaware of any cost cutting measures that have taken place and do
not hold any recorded information relating specifically to cost cutting
measures the council has taken to reduce the costs incurred in issuing
summonses and obtaining liability orders.
 
If you are unhappy with the response you have received, you have the right
to request an internal review by the Council. If following this you are
still dissatisfied you may contact the Office of the Information
Commissioner. If you wish to request an internal review, please contact me
and I will make the necessary arrangements.
 
Yours sincerely
 
Freedom of Information Officer
North East Lincolnshire Council
 

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Neil Gilliatt (Account suspended)

Dear PPD - FOI,

Thank you for your 1 May 2012 email.

I notice that there is no information provided regarding the increases/composition change of the costs for 2004/05 and 2006/07.

Could you also please supply all information you hold in respect of cabinet documents or similar (2004/05 & 2006/07) that would have been necessary to propose the changes and subsequently agree and implement them.

If you cannot supply this information, for example, because it does not exist, please provide the reason.

Could you also reconsider your response to the following:

Q2. From the period 2000 to date, please supply all information relating to cost cutting measures the council has taken to reduce the costs incurred in issuing summonses and obtaining liability orders. This would include introduction of any new technology or merging or sharing resourses. Again, please supply any cabinet documents or similar.

Bearing in mind that technology will have advanced considerably over this period in respect to systems, administrating council tax.

And

http://www.thisisgrimsby.co.uk/21-jobs-c...

"A TOTAL of 21 jobs will be lost as two local authorities merge their revenue and benefits services.

As reported, the services at North East Lincolnshire Council will unite with North Lincolnshire Council in a bid to save the two authorities £1.27-million from 2012-13 to 2014-15."

Yours sincerely,

Neil Gilliatt

PPD - FOI, North East Lincolnshire Council

Dear Mr Gilliatt

 

Thank you for your query in regard to the information supplied in response
to your information request, reference number 2551/1213, the handling of
your request has been reviewed and I am pleased to provide the following
clarification.

 

Question 1 - No information is held in relation to the composition of the
costs for 2004/05 and 2006/07, other than the figures you quoted in your
request and provided below.

 

     2004 / 2005 – Summons £30.00 / Liability Order £25.00

     2006 / 2007 – Summons £32.00 / Liability Order £25.00

 

The costs would have been determined by the service to reflect the costs
reasonably incurred for Council Tax collection and recovery by the  North
East Lincolnshire Council, as allowed by the  Council Tax Administration
and Enforcement regulations 1992 .

 

Question 2:   The response to your second question remains unchanged as
the issues you identify do not relate specifically to "measures the
council has taken to reduce the costs incurred in issuing summonses and
obtaining liability orders."    

 

If you remain dissatisfied with the Council’s handling of your request, or
the decision of the internal review you can request an independent review
by contacting the Information Commissioner's  Office, Wycliffe House,
Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF, Telephone 08456 306060 or 01625
545745

 

Yours sincerely

 

Paul Ellis

Team Manager - Information Governance, Complaints and Consultation

North East Lincolnshire Council

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Neil Gilliatt (Account suspended)

Dear PPD - FOI,

Thank you for your 17 May 2012 email.

As I hadn't intended my request to relate specifically to "measures the council has taken to reduce the costs incurred in issuing summonses and obtaining liability orders", I'd like to amend my second question as follows:

Q2. From the period 2000 to date, please supply all information relating to any action or measures the council has taken, or changes within the organisation which have resulted in reducing the costs incurred in connection with liability order applications, i.e issuing summonses and obtaining liability orders. This would include introduction of any new technology or merging or sharing resources. Again, please supply any cabinet documents or similar.

Bearing in mind that technology will have advanced considerably over this period in respect to systems, administrating council tax.

And

http://www.thisisgrimsby.co.uk/21-jobs-c...

"A TOTAL of 21 jobs will be lost as two local authorities merge their revenue and benefits services.

As reported, the services at North East Lincolnshire Council will unite with North Lincolnshire Council in a bid to save the two authorities £1.27-million from 2012-13 to 2014-15."

Yours sincerely,

Neil Gilliatt

PPD - FOI, North East Lincolnshire Council

Dear Mr Gilliatt
 
Thank you for your revised question in relation to information request,
reference 2551/1213,  which asked for 'From the period 2000 to date,
please supply all information relating to any action or measures the
council has taken, or changes within the organisation which have resulted
in reducing the costs incurred in connection with liability order
applications, i.e issuing summonses and obtaining liability orders. This
would include introduction of any new technology or merging or sharing
resources. Again, please supply any cabinet documents or similar.'
 
North East Lincolnshire Council holds the information you have requested.
We have however estimated, that the time required for the activities
needed to determine the information held and then locate, retrieve and
extract the information you have requested would exceed the appropriate
limit of £450 (18 hours).
 
The scope of your request  would potentially cover all restructuring and
cost reduction projects which have taken place across the entire council
since 2000, that could have impacted on liability order applications.
Whilst the Council holds information in relation to restructuring and cost
reduction projects, it is not specifically classified in relation to the
outcomes for liability order applications. To therefore determine the
information held and then locate, retrieve and extract would require a
review of all restructuring activities and cost reduction projects since
2000. As information sources relating to ' action or measures' would need
to be reviewed covering a period of over 12 years, it is not possible to
determine the actual time required but estimates based on the number of
potential activities involved would exceed 18 hours for each individual
year.   
 
Under section 12 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, a public
authority is not obliged to comply with a request where the estimated cost
of doing so would exceed the appropriate amount. The Council’s Charging
Policy for information requests, which clearly sets out our
responsibilities and how the charging policy is applied, is available on
our website at
[1]http://www.nelincs.gov.uk/council-and-de....
 
As a Council we are committed to the Freedom of Information Act and are
happy to support where ever possible any request for information we
receive. As stated in our response of 01/05/12, no measures have been
undertaken relating solely or specifically to reducing the costs incurred
in issuing summonses and obtaining liability orders. Based on the nature
of your request we are unable to provide any advice or assistance that
would allow you to refine your request so that it could be answered
without exceeding the appropriate limit.
 
If you are unhappy with the response you have received, you have the right
to request an internal review by the Council. If following this you are
still dissatisfied you may contact the Office of the Information
Commissioner. If you wish to request an internal review, please contact me
and I will make the necessary arrangements.
 
Yours sincerely on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council
 
Paul Ellis
Team Manager - Information Governance, Complaints and Consultation
North East Lincolnshire Council
 
 

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Neil Gilliatt (Account suspended)

Dear PPD - FOI,

Thank you for your 29 May 2012 email.

Although you have not been able to supply the requested information, it has in a way been answered.

It is evident that the council has taken cost cutting measures that have resulted in reduced costs incurred in liability order applications.

However, providing details of savings made in applications for liability order would fall inside the 18 hour limit in respect to the merge of revenue and benefits services of NELC and North Lincolnshire Council.

Yours sincerely,

Neil Gilliatt

Mail Delivery System,

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Neil Gilliatt (Account suspended)

Dear North East Lincolnshire Council,

Thank you for your 29 May 2012 email.

Although you have not been able to supply the requested information, it has in a way been answered.

It is evident that the council has taken cost cutting measures that have resulted in reduced costs incurred in liability order applications.

However, providing details of savings made in applications for liability order would fall inside the 18 hour limit in respect to the merge of revenue and benefits services of NELC and North Lincolnshire Council.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Gilliatt

Neil Gilliatt (Account suspended)

Dear North East Lincolnshire Council,

Please can you ensure this message is directed to the relevant person dealing with this FOI request.

I have received a notice of message delivery failure. The recipient's email was "PPD - FOI"

This was the original message sent 29 May 2012:

Dear PPD - FOI,

Thank you for your 29 May 2012 email.

Although you have not been able to supply the requested information, it has in a way been answered.

It is evident that the council has taken cost cutting measures that have resulted in reduced costs incurred in liability order applications.

However, providing details of savings made in applications for liability order would fall inside the 18 hour limit in respect to the merge of revenue and benefits services of NELC and North Lincolnshire Council.

Yours sincerely,

Neil Gilliatt

PPD - FOI, North East Lincolnshire Council

Dear Mr Gilliat

I am pleased to acknowledge receipt of your e-mails of May 29th and June 5th in relation to request 2251_1213

Your request has been passed to the relevant department for processing and you can expect your response within the 20 working day limit. If it will take us longer than 20 working days to respond to you, we will inform you of this and provide you with the expected date for receiving the response.

Further information about how we will deal with your Freedom of Information requests is available on our website at: http://www.nelincs.gov.uk/council-and-de...

Please feel free to contact me if you require any further information or assistance quoting the reference number above.

Yours sincerely

Paul Ellis
Team Manager - Information Governance, Complaints and Consultation
North East Lincolnshire Council

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Hollingsworth, Ian, North East Lincolnshire Council

Dear Mr Gilliatt
 
In response to your request an Internal Review has taken place into
the handling of your information request FOI/2551_1213, which asked for
'From the period 2000 to date, please supply all information relating to
any action or measures the council has taken, or changes within the
organisation which have resulted in reducing the costs incurred in
connection with liability order applications, i.e. issuing summonses and
obtaining liability orders. This would include introduction of any new
technology or merging or sharing resources. Again, please supply any
cabinet documents or similar.'
 
In response to your request we have confirmed that no measures have been
undertaken relating solely or specifically to reducing the costs incurred
in issuing summonses and obtaining liability orders. However it was
identified all restructuring and cost reduction projects which have taken
place within the Council since 2000, could have potentially impacted on
the liability order application process, resulting in cost reduction.
Whilst the Council holds information in relation to restructuring and cost
reduction projects, it is not specifically classified in relation to the
outcomes for liability order applications. Therefore to determine the
information held and then locate, retrieve and extract the information
relevant to your request would require the review of all restructuring
activities and cost reduction projects since 2000. We have estimated that
based on the number of potential projects involved the time required to
complete this review would exceed the appropriate limit of £450 (18
hours), due to the number and individual nature of each project it is not
possible to provide a precise estimate of the time required for the
review, or provide further advice and assistance that would allow the
scope of the request to be redefined so that it can be responded to
without exceeding the appropriate limit.   
 
The handling of your request has been reviewed and it has been determined
that the Council has meet its responsibilities to you under the Freedom of
Information Act, informing you within 20 working days that to extract the
information you have requested would exceed the appropriate limit, and
providing you with your rights of appeal.
 
You suggest 'However, providing details of savings made in applications
for liability order would fall inside the 18 hour limit in respect to the
merge of revenue and benefits services of NELC and North Lincolnshire
Council'. As the savings expected to be made as a result of the shared
revenues and benefits services between North and North East Lincolnshire
Council do not relate specifically to liability order applications this
would not be possible.
 
If you remain dissatisfied with the Council’s handling of your request, or
the decision of the internal review you can request an independent review
by contacting the Information Commissioner's Office at Wycliffe House,
Water Lane, Wilmslow
Cheshire, SK9 5AF
 
Yours sincerely on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council
 
Paul Ellis
Corporate Records and Information Manager
North East Lincolnshire Council
 
 
 

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Neil Gilliatt (Account suspended)

Dear Hollingsworth, Ian,

Thank you for your 15 June 2012 email.

Can you please confirm one way or another, whether I have understood correctly that liability order applications or any activity connected with their preparation will be unaffected as a result of the shared revenues and benefits services between North and North East Lincolnshire Council.

Yours sincerely,

Neil Gilliatt

PPD - FOI, North East Lincolnshire Council

Dear Mr Gilliatt

There is no anticipated impact on this area of work at NELC as a result of shared service of the revenues and benefits service between North and North East Lincolnshire Council.

I trust that this clarifies the information you have received.

Yours sincerely on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council

Freedom of Information Officer

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Neil Gilliatt (Account suspended)

Dear PPD - FOI,

Thank you for your 18 June 2012 email.

You state:

"There is no anticipated impact on this area of work at NELC as a result of shared service of the revenues and benefits service between North and North East Lincolnshire Council."

I understand this to mean that:

i) all activity connected with liability order applications and their preparation will be the same both before and after the merger of revenues and benefits services between North and North East Lincolnshire Council.

ii) those activities in relation to liability order applications and their preparation carried out at North East Lincolnshire council will remain at NELC.

iii) those activities in relation to liability order applications and their preparation carried out at North Lincolnshire council will remain at NLC.

iv) neither any employee or position will become redundant in respect of liability order applications at NELC as a result of the merger of revenues and benefits services between North and North East Lincolnshire Council.

v) neither any employee or position will become redundant in respect of liability order applications at NLC as a result of the merger of revenues and benefits services between North and North East Lincolnshire Council.

Is this effectively what you are saying?

Yours sincerely,

Neil Gilliatt

PPD - FOI, North East Lincolnshire Council

Dear Mr Gilliatt

 

Further to the internal review of your Freedom of Information request
2551_1213, and as previously informed there is no anticipated 'direct'
impact on the area of liability order applications in relation to the
shared service of the revenues and benefits service between North and
North East Lincolnshire Council.

 

The Shared Service is yet to commence and take shape, but based on the
current information held I am pleased to provide the following response to
the points you raised:

 

i) all activity connected with liability order applications and their
preparation will be the same both before and after the merger of revenues
and benefits services between North and North East Lincolnshire Council.

 

No direct change in relation to Liability Order applications is
anticipated.

    

ii) those activities in relation to liability order applications and their
preparation carried out at North East Lincolnshire council will remain at
NELC.

 

Yes.

    

iii) those activities in relation to liability order applications and
their preparation carried out at North Lincolnshire council will remain at
NLC.

 

Yes.

    

iv) neither any employee or position will become redundant in respect of
liability order applications at NELC as a result of the merger of revenues
and benefits services between North and North East Lincolnshire Council.

 

Correct.

    

v) neither any employee or position will become redundant in respect of
liability order applications at NLC as a result of the merger of revenues
and benefits services between North and North East Lincolnshire Council.

 

Correct.

    

If you remain dissatisfied with the Council’s handling of your request, or
the decision of the internal review you can request an independent review
by contacting the Information Commissioner's Office at Wycliffe House,
Water Lane, Wilmslow Cheshire, SK9 5AF

 

Yours sincerely on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council

 

Paul Ellis

Team Manager - Information Governance, Complaints and Consultation

North East Lincolnshire Council    

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