Empty Properties

Bryan made this Freedom of Information request to Folkestone & Hythe District Council

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

The request was partially successful.

Dear Shepway District Council,

Please can you provide me with the following information under the Freedom Of Information Act 2000:-

(a) addresses of all “long term empty” Commercial and Public Sector properties that are within the District of Shepway; and

(b) the names of the owners of those properties referred to in (a)

In regards to any possible objection under section 31(1)a of the Freedom of Information Act and the subsequent public interest test the following judgement from the Information Tribunal must be taken note of.

i)With regard to identifying empty properties, it could be
considered to be in the public interest to disclose such
information in order to assist, for example, in encouraging the use of empty properties. The Information Tribunal
considered this in 2007 and paragraph 86 of their decision states:

".....Our conclusion on the public interest test is that, insofar as the properties are owned by individuals, the public interest in maintaining the exemption does outweigh the public interest in disclosure. The impact of crime on individuals as an inherent part of the public interest in this circumstance is a significant factor and leads to the exemption outweighing the public interest in disclosure in our view. However, for those properties that are owned by those other than individuals, including public authorities, our conclusion is that it [the security considerations, ie the section 31 law enforcement exemption] does not, and the public interest is in favour of disclosure. This is because the impact of crime on an individual is not present and
this inherent aspect of the public interest in preventing crime is therefore absent and changes the analysis of the balance."

(Tribunal Ref: EA/2006/0060&0066. Decision promulgated 10^th May 2007)

I would like to receive the information in pdf format

If this request is too wide or unclear, I would be grateful if you could contact me as I understand that under the Act, you are required to advise and assist requesters. If any of this information is already in the public domain, please can you direct me to it, with page references and URLs if necessary.

If my request is denied in whole or part, I ask that you cite one of the Freedom of Information Act exemptions for each piece of information you refuse to release. I would also expect you to release all non-exempt material. I reserve the right to appeal your decision to withhold any information or to charge excessive fees.

I should be entitled to a response within 20 working days. I would be grateful if you could confirm in writing that you have received this request. I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours faithfully,

Bryan

Folkestone & Hythe District Council

Dear Bryan Rylands,

Thank you for your request dated 26 April 2014 which was received by us on 28 April 2014.

We will endeavour to supply the information you have requested within the requisite 20 working days. If we think that it will take longer, we will contact you.

Yours sincerely,

Rachel Neville
Information and Legal Officer
Tel: 01303 853437
Fax: 01303 853548
Shepway District Council, Civic Centre, Castle Hill Avenue,
Folkestone, Kent, CT20 2QY
E-mail: [Shepway District Council request email]
Website: www.shepway.gov.uk
 
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Folkestone & Hythe District Council

1 Attachment

Dear Bryan Rylands,

I am writing in respect of your Freedom of Information enquiry dated 26 April 2014 which was received by us on 28 April 2014. This request has been handled under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Please find attached information in response to your request.

Should you require any further information, or if you are not satisfied with our response, please do not hesitate to contact me on 01303 853437. You may also request an internal review by writing to the following address:

Freedom of Information Appeals Officer
Administration
Shepway District Council
Castle Hill Avenue
Folkestone
Kent CT20 2QY

Alternatively you can use our Customer Comment Form which can be accessed at our website www.shepway.gov.uk

In addition, if you are not satisfied with our response you may apply to the Information Commissioner for an independent review at the following address:

The information Commissioner
Wyncliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire SK9 5AF
Telephone 01625 545700
www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk

Yours sincerely,

Rachel Neville
Information and Legal Officer
Tel: 01303 853437
Fax: 01303 853548
Shepway District Council, Civic Centre, Castle Hill Avenue,
Folkestone, Kent, CT20 2QY
E-mail: [Shepway District Council request email]
Website: www.shepway.gov.uk
 
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