Dear Scarborough Borough Council,
Would you pleaase advice me how the issuing of iPads to councillors will benefit the local ccouncil tax payers, and if the councillors are to use these for personnel use.
If there is personnel usage is this to be monitored and also declared to HMRC as a perk of the job which brings with it tax liabilities
Peter C Gehrke
FOIA No: 1925
Date of Receipt: 13 February 2012
Last Date for Response: 12 March 2012
File Ref: CP01/00000137
Thank you for your written communication of 13 February 2012. The
information that you require is not included within the Council’s formal
publication scheme and a referral has been made to the responsible officer
to collate a response.
You may expect to receive a response to your request by 12 March 2012,
that is within twenty working days of its receipt by the Council.
In some circumstances a fee may be payable and if that is the case, we
will let you know. A fees notice will be issued to you, and you will be
required to pay before we will proceed to deal with your request.
Please ensure that any further communication in relation to this matter is
sent by you to the Freedom of Information Officer at the above address
quoting the reference in the subject line of this communication.
Freedom of Information Officer
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Dear Mr Gehrke
Thank you for your request for information that has been allocated the number identified above.
The report relating to this issue is published by the Council through its publication scheme and can be found on the website at http://democracy.scarborough.gov.uk/ieLi...
Responding directly to your question the primary benefits to Council tax payers are the financial savings to the cost of operating the Council that will arise from implementation of tablet devices. Those savings arise from:
(a) the reduction in the immediate direct costs of producing agendas - eg paper, envelops, print, postage
(b) the indirect cost savings arising from reducing the Council's need to purchase print equipment and licence software to deliver paper agendas
(c) the indirect costs in time related costs for the production of the agendas
Council members are not employees but elected to their role by the electorate and are necessarily provided with equipment to undertake their role. The revenue costs have been considered by the Council's Independent Remuneration Panel who are responsible for providing independent guidance on behalf of Council taxpayers to the Council in relation to member allowances. The broadband allowances have been the subject of review by the Panel and the report to Council on 24th February 2012 explains that the proposed introduction of tablet devices will lead to a slight reduction in broadband revenue costs.
Use of Council provided equipment is subject to the Council's IT policies including the Internet Useage Policy which touches upon personal use. Again that policy is published through the Council's publication scheme and can be found on the Council's website within the "Library" of policies.
If you are unhappy with the service you have received in relation to your request and wish to make a complaint or request a review of our decision, you should write to David Kitson, Senior Solicitor, Legal and Support Services, Town Hall, St Nicholas Street, Scarborough, North Yorkshire, YO11 2HG or email [email address].
If you are not content with the outcome your complaint, you may apply directly to the Information Commissioner for a decision. Generally, the Information Commissioner’s Office cannot make a decision unless you have exhausted the complaints procedure provided by Scarborough Borough Council. The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: The Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF. Tel: 01625 545745 Fax: 01625 524510 Web: www.ico.gov.uk.
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