EU referendum

Fred Bocks made this Freedom of Information request to Electoral Commission

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was successful.

Dear Electoral Commission,

Please send a copy of all material you have regarding the productio of ballot papers for the EU referendum, including specimin ballot paper, templates, official marks, guidance to printers and so on

Yours faithfully,
Fred

FOI, Electoral Commission

1 Attachment

  • Attachment

    Picture Device Independent Bitmap 1.jpg

    13K Download

Dear Fred Bocks,
 
Our Ref: FOI 59/16
 
Thank you for your request under the Freedom of Information Act dated
30^th May 2016, received by the Commission on 31^st May 2016, concerning:
 
Please send a copy of all material you have regarding the production of
ballot papers for the EU referendum, including specimen ballot paper,
templates, official marks, guidance to printers and so on.
 
 
The Commission aims to respond to requests for information promptly and
within the statutory timeframe of twenty working days.
 
You may expect to receive a reply sent from the Commission by 28^th June
2016.
 
 
Yours sincerely
 
 
Paul O’Malley
Information Adviser (Records Management)
The Electoral Commission
3 Bunhill Row
London EC1Y 8YZ
Tel: 020 7271 0554
Fax: 020 7271 0665
[1]www.electoralcommission.org.uk
[2]www.aboutmyvote.co.uk
 
Putting voters first
 
P   Please consider the environment before printing this email.
 

References

Visible links
1. http://skynet/dm/Functions/IM/Requests%2...
2. http://skynet/dm/Functions/IM/Requests%2...

FOI, Electoral Commission

11 Attachments

Dear Fred Bocks,

 

Our Ref: FOI 59/16

 

Thank you for your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 dated
31 May 2016.

 

The Commission aims to respond to requests for information promptly and
has done so within the statutory timeframe of twenty working days.

 

Your request is in bold below followed by our response.

 

You have requested:

 

Please send a copy of all material you have regarding the production of
ballot papers for the EU referendum, including specimen ballot paper,
templates, official marks, guidance to printers and so on.

 

Our response is as follows:

 

The Commission holds information relevant to your request.

 

In August 2015, the Chief Counting Officer (CCO), who is also the Chair of
the Electoral Commission, launched [1]a consultation on her proposed
approach to managing the referendum on the UK’s membership of the European
Union, which included proposed directions on the design and printing of
the ballot paper.

 

In November 2015, the Chief Counting Officer published a [2]response to
the consultation in which she confirmed her directions around the design
and printing of ballot papers and set out her intention to produce a
specimen ballot paper for use by Counting Officers (COs) at the
referendum. In this paper, the CCO confirmed that she was directing COs to
produce ballot papers in the form specified by her. The CCO recognised the
importance of ensuring that the specimen can be reproduced in practice,
for example, to accommodate the production of ballot papers which are
capable of being used with a one-piece mailer postal ballot pack, and
undertook to work with the Regional Counting Officers (RCOs) and print
suppliers in its development. The CCO also committed to working with the
RCO and COs in Wales as appropriate in developing the specimen bilingual
ballot paper.

 

We hold the following information relating to your request:

 

·         E-mail from Andrew Scallan (the Commission’s Director of
Electoral Administration and the Deputy Chief Counting Officer at the
referendum) to print suppliers inviting views on the specimen ballot
paper.

 

·         Summary of responses to the above e-mail which were received
from print suppliers.

 

·         Internal emails between Electoral Commission staff relating to
the development of the specimen ballot paper (in English and in English
and Welsh).

 

·         E-mail correspondence between Andrew Scallan and the RCOs on the
specimen ballot paper and accompanying guidance. This includes feedback
from the RCOs about the draft specimen paper and guidance, and the
subsequent issue of the final specimen ballot paper (in English and in
English and Welsh) and accompanying guidance.

 

We also published general guidance for COs which includes content on the
design and printing of ballot papers, including on official marks, which
can be found on our website:
[3]http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/i-....

 

For reasons of commercial sensitivity, we consider that some of the
correspondence from print suppliers is exempt under Section 43 . As an
alternative I have attached a summary of the responses we received from
suppliers to Andrew Scallan’s e-mail inviting views on the specimen ballot
paper (as outlined in the above list). 

 

Section 43(2)

 

Section 43(2) provides for exemption from disclosure information that
would or would be likely to prejudice the commercial interests of any
person. In this circumstance, the information we hold relates to the
commercial interests of third party print suppliers. We have consulted
with these suppliers and most of them have stated that releasing these
documents would prejudice their commercial interests and their ability to
compete for future contracts.

 

Application of this exemption is also subject to the public interest test.
The Commission recognises there is a public interest in understanding how
public funds are spent in an open and accountable manner.

 

There is also a public interest in companies being able to compete fairly
within the market in which they operate and therefore not putting
companies at a commercial disadvantage. Releasing this information
relating to technical configurations would weaken their ability to
participate competitively in the market and put them at a commercial
disadvantage.

 

Further, to satisfy the public interest in transparency, we have provided
a summary of the responses we received.

 

Having carefully weighed the public interest relating to possible
disclosure of the information requested under Section 43(2), we are
satisfied that it is not appropriate at this time to disclose this
specific information which the Commission holds. The Commission is
satisfied that maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in
disclosure.

 

I trust that this information satisfies your request. The Commission
strives to be an open, transparent authority, but in some circumstances we
cannot responsibly release requested information, and we ask for your
understanding in this regard.

If you are not satisfied with this response, please note that the
Commission operates a review procedure, details of which can be found on
the Commission website at:
[4]http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/ab...

Please also note that if you have exhausted all internal Commission review
procedures and you are still not satisfied you have the right to appeal to
the Information Commissioner. Details of this procedure can be found on
the ICO website: [5]http://www.ico.gov.uk

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

Paul O’Malley

Information Adviser (Records Management)

The Electoral Commission

3 Bunhill Row

London EC1Y 8YZ

Tel: 020 7271 0554

Fax: 020 7271 0665

[6]www.electoralcommission.org.uk

[7]www.aboutmyvote.co.uk

 

Putting voters first

 

[8]Email-signature

P   Please consider the environment before printing this email.

References

Visible links
1. http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/__...
2. http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/__...
3. http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/i-...
4. http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/ab...
5. http://www.ico.gov.uk/
6. http://skynet/dm/Functions/IM/Requests%2...
7. http://skynet/dm/Functions/IM/Requests%2...

FOI, Electoral Commission

10 Attachments

Dear Fred Bocks,

 

Our Ref: FOI 59/16

 

Thank you for your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 dated
31 May 2016.

 

The Commission aims to respond to requests for information promptly and
has done so within the statutory timeframe of twenty working days.

 

Your request is in bold below followed by our response.

 

You have requested:

 

Please send a copy of all material you have regarding the production of
ballot papers for the EU referendum, including specimen ballot paper,
templates, official marks, guidance to printers and so on.

 

Our response is as follows:

 

The Commission holds information relevant to your request.

 

In August 2015, the Chief Counting Officer (CCO), who is also the Chair of
the Electoral Commission, launched [1]a consultation on her proposed
approach to managing the referendum on the UK’s membership of the European
Union, which included proposed directions on the design and printing of
the ballot paper.

 

In November 2015, the Chief Counting Officer published a [2]response to
the consultation in which she confirmed her directions around the design
and printing of ballot papers and set out her intention to produce a
specimen ballot paper for use by Counting Officers (COs) at the
referendum. In this paper, the CCO confirmed that she was directing COs to
produce ballot papers in the form specified by her. The CCO recognised the
importance of ensuring that the specimen can be reproduced in practice,
for example, to accommodate the production of ballot papers which are
capable of being used with a one-piece mailer postal ballot pack, and
undertook to work with the Regional Counting Officers (RCOs) and print
suppliers in its development. The CCO also committed to working with the
RCO and COs in Wales as appropriate in developing the specimen bilingual
ballot paper.

 

We hold the following information relating to your request:

 

·         E-mail from Andrew Scallan (the Commission’s Director of
Electoral Administration and the Deputy Chief Counting Officer at the
referendum) to print suppliers inviting views on the specimen ballot
paper.

 

·         Summary of responses to the above e-mail which were received
from print suppliers.

 

·         Internal emails between Electoral Commission staff relating to
the development of the specimen ballot paper (in English and in English
and Welsh).

 

·         E-mail correspondence between Andrew Scallan and the RCOs on the
specimen ballot paper and accompanying guidance. This includes feedback
from the RCOs about the draft specimen paper and guidance, and the
subsequent issue of the final specimen ballot paper (in English and in
English and Welsh) and accompanying guidance.

 

We also published general guidance for COs which includes content on the
design and printing of ballot papers, including on official marks, which
can be found on our website:
[3]http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/i-....

 

For reasons of commercial sensitivity, we consider that some of the
correspondence from print suppliers is exempt under Section 43 . As an
alternative I have attached a summary of the responses we received from
suppliers to Andrew Scallan’s e-mail inviting views on the specimen ballot
paper (as outlined in the above list). 

 

Section 43(2)

 

Section 43(2) provides for exemption from disclosure information that
would or would be likely to prejudice the commercial interests of any
person. In this circumstance, the information we hold relates to the
commercial interests of third party print suppliers. We have consulted
with these suppliers and most of them have stated that releasing these
documents would prejudice their commercial interests and their ability to
compete for future contracts.

 

Application of this exemption is also subject to the public interest test.
The Commission recognises there is a public interest in understanding how
public funds are spent in an open and accountable manner.

 

There is also a public interest in companies being able to compete fairly
within the market in which they operate and therefore not putting
companies at a commercial disadvantage. Releasing this information
relating to technical configurations would weaken their ability to
participate competitively in the market and put them at a commercial
disadvantage.

 

Further, to satisfy the public interest in transparency, we have provided
a summary of the responses we received.

 

Having carefully weighed the public interest relating to possible
disclosure of the information requested under Section 43(2), we are
satisfied that it is not appropriate at this time to disclose this
specific information which the Commission holds. The Commission is
satisfied that maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in
disclosure.

 

I trust that this information satisfies your request. The Commission
strives to be an open, transparent authority, but in some circumstances we
cannot responsibly release requested information, and we ask for your
understanding in this regard.

If you are not satisfied with this response, please note that the
Commission operates a review procedure, details of which can be found on
the Commission website at:
[4]http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/ab...

Please also note that if you have exhausted all internal Commission review
procedures and you are still not satisfied you have the right to appeal to
the Information Commissioner. Details of this procedure can be found on
the ICO website: [5]http://www.ico.gov.uk

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

Paul O’Malley

Information Adviser (Records Management)

The Electoral Commission

3 Bunhill Row

London EC1Y 8YZ

Tel: 020 7271 0554

Fax: 020 7271 0665

[6]www.electoralcommission.org.uk

[7]www.aboutmyvote.co.uk

 

Putting voters first

 

[8]Email-signature

P   Please consider the environment before printing this email.

References

Visible links
1. http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/__...
2. http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/__...
3. http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/i-...
4. http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/ab...
5. http://www.ico.gov.uk/
6. http://skynet/dm/Functions/IM/Requests%2...
7. http://skynet/dm/Functions/IM/Requests%2...

Dear Mr. O'malley,

Thankyou for your messages. but they do not contain the specimin ballot paper that one of the email messages talks about being in indesign, pdf and so on. they also do not include the ballot papers as used in the different counting areas with the various official marks.

I think maybe my request wasnt clear but please could I have these too.

Yours sincerely,

Fred Bocks

Dear FOI,

Did you receive my email on 27th June?

"Dear Mr. O'malley,

Thankyou for your messages. but they do not contain the specimin ballot paper that one of the email messages talks about being in indesign, pdf and so on. they also do not include the ballot papers as used in the different counting areas with the various official marks.

I think maybe my request wasnt clear but please could I have these too.

Yours sincerely,

Fred Bocks"

Yours sincerely,

Fred Bocks

FOI, Electoral Commission

2 Attachments

  • Attachment

    Bilingual Welsh EU Referendum ballot paper FINAL v2.zip

    987K Download

  • Attachment

    EU Referendum ballot paper.zip

    986K Download

Dear Mr. Bocks,

Thank you for your message regarding your previous our response to your request under the Freedom of Information act (2000).

Please accept our apologies for not responding to your message sooner. The specimen ballot papers in question were included as an attachments in several of the emails we provided to you, however on investigation it appears as though you may have difficulty opening these.

Therefore I am attaching separate folders to this message containing the English language and Welsh bilingual specimen ballot papers that were used as the basis for the ballot paper issued for each voting area by the Counting Officers at the 2016 EU referendum.

With regard to your other query about ballot papers used in each voting area, the Commission does not hold copies of these. Decisions about the Official Mark to be used on the ballot paper were made at a regional or local level for the referendum. If you require copies of the ballot paper used by Counting Officers you could approach them directly in the first instance to see if they can provide you with a sample of the ballot paper used in their area.

Yours sincerely,

Paul O’Malley
Information Adviser (Records Management)
The Electoral Commission
3 Bunhill Row
London EC1Y 8YZ
Tel: 020 7271 0554
Fax: 020 7271 0665
www.electoralcommission.org.uk
www.aboutmyvote.co.uk

Putting voters first

   Please consider the environment before printing this email.

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