Council newspapers

L Barnett made this Freedom of Information request to Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council

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

The request was successful.

Dear Bolton Borough Council,

Under the terms of the Freedom of Information Act, I wish to receive the following information from your authority:

1. The name, frequency and distribution/circulation of your council newspaper (by council newspaper I mean the most frequently published newspaper or magazine intended for mass distribution covering more than one topic)

2. How much it cost to produce and distribute said newspaper in the last full financial year, and how much was budgeted from council resources in the financial year 2009/2010

3. How much of that cost is offset by advertising

4. How much of that advertising, if any, comes from external sources (ie not from your authority's budgets)?

5. Which other public sector partners pay to run advertising in your newspaper, eg PCTs?

6. Whether recruitment advertising forms part of the advertising in your newspaper?

7. A copy of an editorial policy guide, if one exists, which governs the material which is placed in the newspaper, and how it is decided

8. A copy of an advertising policy guide, if one exists, which governs what sort of advertising is suitable.

9. The number of people employed to put your newspaper/newsletter together, including total cost and staff organisation chart

Some parts of this request may be easier to answer than others, and should this prove to be the case I would ask that you release available data as soon as possible rather than hold up the entire request.

I would prefer to receive this information electronically. If the decision is made to withhold some of this data using exemptions in Act, please inform me of that fact and cite the exemptions used.

If you need any clarification then please contact me at the email. Under your section 16 duty to provide advice and assistance I would expect you to contact me if you find this request unmanageable in any way.

I would be grateful if you could confirm in writing that you have received this request, and I look forward to hearing from you in the near future.

Yours faithfully,

L Barnett

Wiper, Carl, Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council

I am out of the office and will return on 4 January 2010.

If you are requesting information please resend your email to my colleague
Carol Johnson [email address]

I will deal with other emails on my return.

thank you

This e-mail and any attached files are confidential and may also be
legally privileged. They are intended solely for the intended addressee.
If you are not the addressee please e-mail it back to the sender and then
immediately, permanently delete it. Do not read, print, re-transmit, store
or act in reliance on it. This e-mail may be monitored by Bolton Council
in accordance with current regulations. This footnote also confirms that
this e-mail message has been swept for the presence of computer viruses
currently known to Bolton Council. However, the recipient is responsible
for virus-checking before opening this message and any attachment. Unless
expressly stated to the contrary, any views expressed in this message are
those of the individual sender and may not necessarily reflect the views
of Bolton Council. http://www.bolton.gov.uk

Wiper, Carl, Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council

Request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000

Thank you for your request for information received at this office on 4 January 2009. This has been considered as a request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Your request may take up to 20 working days to be processed.

If an exemption applies to the information that you have requested, the statutory period may be exceeded in accordance with the provisions of that Act.

If a charge is applicable to your request, we will advise you of this in due course.

Should you have any queries, please contact me.

_________________________________________________
Carl Wiper LLM MCLIP
Corporate Information Manager
Bolton Council, Room 320, Town Hall, Bolton BL1 1RU tel: 01204 331031, mobile: 0778 903 1512
[email address]

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Wieckowski, Andrzej, Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council

2 Attachments

Dear sir or madam,

Please find below the response to your recent Freedom of Information
request.

Yours faithfully,

Andrzej Więckowski
Principal Corporate Publications Officer
Bolton Council
Communications and Marketing Agency
2nd Floor
The Wellsprings
Bolton BL1 1US

Tel: 01204 331021
[email address]

Dear Bolton Borough Council,

Under the terms of the Freedom of Information Act, I wish to

receive the following information from your authority:

1. The name, frequency and distribution/circulation of your council

newspaper (by council newspaper I mean the most frequently

published newspaper or magazine intended for mass distribution

covering more than one topic)

Bolton Council produces Bolton Scene, a monthly newspaper, 11 times a
year.

There is no April edition to avoid a clash with local elections in May.
Each paper has a 122,000 print run delivered to approx 120,000 households
and the rest to council information points such as libraries, one stop
shops etc.

2. How much it cost to produce and distribute said newspaper in the

last full financial year, and how much was budgeted from council

resources in the financial year 2009/2010

In the last full financial year (2008/9) the total cost of producing
Bolton Scene (excluding salaries – see below) was £234,804.51. This was
paid for from a budget provided by the council of £110,000 and income of
£132,802.50 (internal income of £64,650.50 and external partner
advertising of £68,152).

It is not possible to provide a definitive figure for the financial year
2009/10 because the year has not finished yet. The average page count is
16 pages but this can rise which has a subsequent effect on costs and
income. The cost so far (May 2009-Jan 2010) for the financial year is
£141,228.62. The cost is predicted to be £172,277.97 but this may
change.

The budget provided by the council in 2009/10 is £107,000. Income of
£75,104.96 from external partners and £57,217.50 from council
departments so far (May-Jan 2009/10) totalling £132,322.56. The
total income is predicted to be £150,997.46.

The cost does not include salary costs because nobody works full time on
Bolton Scene. A number of staff spend varying amounts of time per month
working on the newspaper as part of their other duties. The posts funded
by the authority are:

• Principal Corporate Publications Officer. The post’s task is to
co-ordinate the production of Bolton Scene and between 50 to 75% of their
time each month is spent on the paper.

• Other employees across the council have a range of duties, and
some provide content for Bolton Scene. Who provides content varies every
month. The posts below spend a small part of their time working on every
edition, as part of their other work:

o Media officers

o Communications and media manager

o Communications officer

Design, print and distribution are three separate contracts which are
tendered for each year.

3. How much of that cost is offset by advertising

See answer to point 2.

4. How much of that advertising, if any, comes from external

sources (ie not from your authority's budgets)?

See answer to point 2.

5. Which other public sector partners pay to run advertising in

your newspaper, eg PCTs?

The partners who advertised in 2008/9 where (listed in chronological order
from when their first advert was placed): Bolton Community College; the
WRAP recycling organisation; Bolton at Home; Smithills Sports Centre; Age
Concern; Contour Housing; Bolton PCT (now NHS Bolton); Association of
Greater Manchester Authorities; the Market Place; Serco; Bolton Arena;
Bolton Citizens Advice Bureau; Bolton Hospital Saturday and sQuid.

Partners who have advertised so far in 2009/10 or have committed to
advertise are (listed in chronological order from when their first advert
was placed): Age Concern; Bolton Community College; Bolton at Home;
Greater Manchester Police: Bolton Arena; sQuid; Job Centre Plus; Bolton
Local Involvement Network; Building Schools for the future partnership;
Bolton Be Safe; Bolton town centre partnership; Bolton Neoartists and
Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority.

6. Whether recruitment advertising forms part of the advertising in

your newspaper?

There are no job adverts in Bolton Scene.

7. A copy of an editorial policy guide, if one exists, which

governs the material which is placed in the newspaper, and how it

is decided

There is no written editorial policy. Editorial content for Bolton Scene
is written to highlight what the council is doing to fulfill the key aims
of the council and its partners within the Bolton Vision strategic
partnership. The attached process map shows how the content for each
edition is decided. The council's communications are governed by local
government communication acts.

8. A copy of an advertising policy guide, if one exists, which

governs what sort of advertising is suitable.

There is no written advertising policy. To meet the costs of production,
Bolton Scene takes advertising from internal council departments and from
external partners which are mainly from the public sector. We do not take
general private sector advertising but have, on limited occasions, taken
adverts from private partners as part of projects.

9. The number of people employed to put your newspaper/newsletter

together, including total cost and staff organisation chart

See answer to point 2 and the attached structure chart. This chart shows
the management responsibilities of the posts mentioned in point 2.

Some parts of this request may be easier to answer than others, and

should this prove to be the case I would ask that you release

available data as soon as possible rather than hold up the entire

request.

I would prefer to receive this information electronically. If the

decision is made to withhold some of this data using exemptions in

Act, please inform me of that fact and cite the exemptions used.

If you need any clarification then please contact me at the email.

Under your section 16 duty to provide advice and assistance I would

expect you to contact me if you find this request unmanageable in

any way.

I would be grateful if you could confirm in writing that you have

received this request, and I look forward to hearing from you in

the near future.

Yours faithfully,

L Barnett

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