Number of notices under S184 HA 1980

The request was refused by Bridgend County Borough Council.

Dear Bridgend Council,
Could you please tell me how many notices (information to show how many 1(a) and how many 1(b)) have been served under the provisions of Highways Act 1980 S184 subsection 1 (a) and (b) in the last 18 months.

If possible could you also provide an example of a 1(a) and 1(b) notice, these could be either the pro-forma used or a copy of an actual notice redacted to remove personal information.

If you hold such information can you tell what is the most common condition contained in a 1(b) notice, if you do not hold this information please say so.

Yours faithfully,

Paul Malpas

foi, Bridgend County Borough Council

Dear Mr Malpas

 

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000 - INFORMATION REQUEST X01-1309

 

We acknowledge your request for information received on 9 January 2013.

 

We are considering your request and you should receive the information
requested within the statutory timescale of 20 working days, unless the
information is exempt or we require additional time to consider whether
disclosure is in the public interest in accordance with section 2 of the
Freedom of Information Act.

 

We will try to supply information in electronic format by email, but if
this is not possible we will let you know. If you have any special
requirements e.g. language, audio, large print, etc. then please let us
know.

 

The Act defines a number of exemptions which may prevent release of the
information you have requested. Before we provide the information we will
consider whether it is proper to release it and if any of the exemption
categories do apply then the information will not be released. We will
tell you if this is the case, and will have a right of appeal.

 

If the information you request contains reference to a third party then
they may be consulted prior to a decision being taken on whether or not to
release the information to you. We will tell you if this is the case.

 

You may have to pay a fee for this information. We will consider this and
let you know. If so you will have to pay the fee before we process and
release the information. The 20 working day time limit for responses will
not start until we receive your payment.

 

If you have any queries or concerns, then please contact me directly.  You
can find out more about the Act from the Information Commissioner at:

 

Information Commissioner‚Äôs Office ‚Äď Wales¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†

2nd Floor

Churchill House

Churchill Way

Cardiff

CF10 2HH

Telephone: 02920 678400          Fax: 02920 678399

Email: [1][email address]

[2]http://www.informationcommissioner.gov.u...

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

Freedom of Information Office

Bridgend County Borough Council

Level 2, Civic Offices

Angel Street

Bridgend

CF31 4WB

Tel: 01656 643565

Email: [3][Bridgend Council request email]

 

 

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foi, Bridgend County Borough Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Malpas,

 

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION REQUEST X01- 1309

 

We refer to your email dated 9 January 2013 which contained a request for
information as set out in italics below.  Following consideration of your
request, in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000, I respond
to each point as follows:

 

Could you please tell me how many notices (information to show how  many
1(a) and how many 1(b)) have been served under the provisions  of Highways
Act 1980 S184 subsection 1 (a) and (b) in the last 18  months.

33 notices have been issued relating to 1(a) of section 184 of the
Highways Act 1980. No notices have been issued relating to 1(b).

    

 If possible could you also provide an example of a 1(a) and 1(b) notice,
these could be either the pro-forma used or a copy of an  actual notice
redacted to remove personal information.

Please find attached a copy of a notice issued under Section 184 Highways
Act 1980 1(a).  This document has been redacted in accordance with the
Data Protection Act 1998.

    

 If you hold such information can you tell what is the most common 
condition contained in a 1(b) notice, if you do not hold this  information
please say so.

As this part of your request is not for specific information we are
treating it as general correspondence rather than a request under the
Freedom of Information Act 2000 and can advise you that with regard to
1(b) the condition that would normally be issued relating to Section 184
would be for the owner or occupier to arrange  for works to be undertaken
to construct a vehicular access that would be suitable for the specific
footway or verge and thus prevent damage to the highway.

 

I hope this response satisfies your request. If you are dissatisfied with
the handling of the request, under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 you
have the right to request a review of the Council’s response to your
request for information.  If you wish to request a review, please write
to:

 

Mr P A Jolley

Assistant Chief Executive Legal and Regulatory Services

& Monitoring Officer

Bridgend County Borough Council

Civic Offices,

Angel Street

Bridgend, CF31 4WB

 

within 28 days of the date of this letter.  If you remain dissatisfied
with the outcome of that review, you may seek further recourse by lodging
an appeal with the Information Commissioner at:

 

Information Commissioner‚Äôs Office ‚Äď Wales

2^nd Floor

Churchill House

Churchill Way

Cardiff

CF10 2HH

Tel:  02920 678400

Fax:  02920 678399

E:mail : [1][email address]

Website:  [2]www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk

 

Yours sincerely

--

Freedom of Information Office

Bridgend County Borough Council

Level 2, Civic Offices

Angel Street

Bridgend

CF31 4WB

Tel: 01656 643565

Email: [Bridgend Council request email]

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Dear foi,

Thank you for information you have provided. Can you please clarify your position as to my final question.

If you hold such information can you tell what is the most common
condition contained in a 1(b) notice, if you do not hold this information
please say so.

In answer to this you have said:

As this part of your request is not for specific information we are
treating it as general correspondence rather than a request under the
Freedom of Information Act 2000 and can advise you that with regard to
1(b) the condition that would normally be issued relating to Section 184
would be for the owner or occupier to arrange for works to be undertaken
to construct a vehicular access that would be suitable for the specific
footway or verge and thus prevent damage to the highway.

Firstly I believe it IS a request for specific information. If you hold copies of section 1(b) notices then you should know what is the most common condition applied. I would ask that you answer my question correctly or clearly state that you do not hold the information - or even that collating the information would exceed the statutory expense for complying with an unfinanced FOI. I specifically asked that if you did not hold the information requested (and it was a request for information) that you state this to be the case.

I would ask that, if it is the case that you do not hold the information requested or that it would be too costly to collate and given your response to Q1 (that no 1(b) notices have been issued in the last 18 months), you advise exactly how you can say what condition would "normally" be issued? For clarity can you state if you have EVER issued a 1(b) notice.

Finally, my request concerned notices issued in the last 18 months. Can you confirm that your answer to Q1 realtes to the last 18 months - can you also confirm that the example of a 1(a) notice that you have supplied dated Oct 2010 is a similar format to those issued in the last 18 months (the example being some 26 months old).

I will give you the oportunity to respond to this mail, should I not receive a satisfactory reply I will request a formal internal review and beyond that a complaint to the IOC

Yours sincerely,

Paul Malpas

foi, Bridgend County Borough Council

Dear Mr Malpas,
I acknowledge receipt of your e-mail and confirm that we will contact you again shortly to provide clarification on the matters which you have raised.
Yours sincerely,

Freedom of Information Office
Bridgend County Borough Council
Level 2, Civic Offices
Angel Street
Bridgend
CF31 4WB
Tel: 01656 643565
Email: [Bridgend Council request email]

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Paul Malpas left an annotation ()

Interesting to note that BCBC do not consider asking what the most common condition applied to a S184 (1) (b) to be a request for information. It certainly appears to me and to any reasonable person to be a request for information.
Also of note is their response telling what "would normally" be contained in such a notice (they say this is being treated as general correspondence and not an FOI request so presumably think this allows for speculation not information) what they have described as a "normal" condition is almost exactly word for word what I was told by the Highways Authority as an excuse for claiming in correspondence that crossing a foot-way / verge was an offence under S184. This was justified by the claim that under subsection 17 it is an offence to use the pathway verge as a crossing IN CONTRAVENTION OF A SECTION 1(b) NOTICE - they claim that as such a notice WOULD contain condition to build a properly constructed crossing then it is an offence to use the pathway as a crossing even before a notice is actually served.

Dear foi,

Please note in addition to my previous mail:

Regarding Q2, I note that you have not supplied a copy of an example of a Section 1(b) notice. Please could you send me one as requetsed in my original FOI request - as previously stated this could Be a pro-forma or a redacted copy of an actual notice served. Please note: IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A COPY OF SUCH A NOTICE THEN PLEASE STATE THIS CLEARLY. Equally could you please tell me if a 1(b) notice has EVER been served.

Yours sincerely,

Paul Malpas

Dear foi,

May I remind you that although I have asked for clarification and some new information I am still awaiting information from my original request i.e. a copy of a HA 1980 S184 1(b) notice - or a statement saying you don't have one AND a proper response to the third part of my request, namely What is the most common condition applied to section 1(b) notices - or a statement saying you do not have this information. The preceding two items are now still awaiting proper response beyond the statutory time frame of a FOI request (last day being 06.02.13).
I am already aware that you have not issued any section 1(b) notices in the last 18 months - so if it will assist you I will accept an answer to my request for most common condition over the last 3 years, 6 years or ever - choose whichever time frame suits you best but please make it clear in your response which time frame you are referring to.
As you have already exceeded the statutory period for reply and have not provided a reasonable explanation for delay I will allow 1 more calendar week for a response before requesting a formal review.

Yours sincerely,

Paul Malpas

foi, Bridgend County Borough Council

Dear Mr Malpas,

 

I write further to your e-mails of 5, 6 and 7 February 2013 in respect of
the above FOI request and can clarify as follows:  all the information
which the Authority provided in response to question 1 - notices served
under section 184 of the Highways Act 1980 ‚Äď was in relation to the last
18 months.  You requested a copy of a notice 1(a) and one was supplied. We
can confirm that whilst this Notice was issued in 2010 it is the same
layout and content as the notices issued in the last 18 months.

 

No notices have been issued under 1(b) as stated in the original response
for the 18 month period originally requested, and we are not aware of a
Notice under 1(b) being issued in the last 5 years.

 

Your request made on 5 February 2013 for the following information: Could
you please tell me if a 1(b) notice has EVER been served is being treated
as a new request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and an
acknowledgement e-mail will be sent to you shortly.

 

With reference to part 3 of your request we can confirm that no 1(b)
notices have been issued in the last 18 months; however in order to assist
you we are able to advise you that in general terms and not in relation to
a specific time period, the condition that would normally be issued
relating to Section 184 would be for the owner or occupier to arrange for
works to be undertaken to construct a vehicular access that would be
suitable for the specific footway or verge and thus prevent damage to the
highway.

 

Should you be dissatisfied with the Authority’s response you may request a
review.  If you wish to request a review, please write to:

 

Mr P A Jolley

Assistant Chief Executive Legal and Regulatory Services & Monitoring
Officer

Bridgend County Borough Council

Civic Offices

Angel Street

Bridgend

CF31 4WB

 

 

Yours sincerely

 

Freedom of Information Office

Bridgend County Borough Council

Level 2, Civic Offices

Angel Street

Bridgend

CF31 4WB

Tel: 01656 643565

Email: [Bridgend Council request email]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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foi, Bridgend County Borough Council

Dear Mr Malpas

 

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000 - INFORMATION REQUEST X01-1390

 

We acknowledge your request for information received on 5 February 2013. 

 

We are considering your request and you should receive the information
requested within the statutory timescale of 20 working days, unless the
information is exempt or we require additional time to consider whether
disclosure is in the public interest in accordance with section 2 of the
Freedom of Information Act.

 

We will try to supply information in electronic format by email, but if
this is not possible we will let you know. If you have any special
requirements e.g. language, audio, large print, etc. then please let us
know.

 

The Act defines a number of exemptions which may prevent release of the
information you have requested. Before we provide the information we will
consider whether it is proper to release it and if any of the exemption
categories do apply then the information will not be released. We will
tell you if this is the case, and will have a right of appeal.

 

If the information you request contains reference to a third party then
they may be consulted prior to a decision being taken on whether or not to
release the information to you. We will tell you if this is the case.

 

You may have to pay a fee for this information. We will consider this and
let you know. If so you will have to pay the fee before we process and
release the information. The 20 working day time limit for responses will
not start until we receive your payment.

 

If you have any queries or concerns, then please contact me directly.  You
can find out more about the Act from the Information Commissioner at:

 

Information Commissioner‚Äôs Office ‚Äď Wales

2^nd Floor

Churchill House

Churchill Way

Cardiff

CF10 2HH

Telephone: 02920 678400          Fax: 02920 678399

Email: [1][email address]

[2]http://www.informationcommissioner.gov.u...

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

Freedom of Information Office

Bridgend County Borough Council

Level 2, Civic Offices

Angel Street

Bridgend

CF31 4WB

Tel: 01656 643473

Email: [3][Bridgend Council request email] 

 

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Dear foi,

In your recent response you included the following paragraph:

"With reference to part 3 of your request we can confirm that no 1(b)
notices have been issued in the last 18 months; however in order to assist
you we are able to advise you that in general terms and not in relation to
a specific time period, the condition that would normally be issued
relating to Section 184 would be for the owner or occupier to arrange for
works to be undertaken to construct a vehicular access that would be
suitable for the specific footway or verge and thus prevent damage to the
highway."

If no notices have been issued in the last 18 months (or indeed 5 years as also stated earlier in your response) can you tell me how you are able to state what condition "would normally be issued". So far you have not been able to find a single 1(b) notice so you cannot possibly be able to state with any certainty what "would normally" be contained in such a notice.

Can you confirm if your statement (as quoted above) is based on actual data or if it is purely conjecture on the part of the author.

Yours sincerely,

Paul Malpas

Dear Bridgend Council,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Bridgend Council's handling of my FOI request 'Number of notices under S184 HA 1980'.

I wrote to you on 9th January 2013. I asked inter alia for an example of a section 1(a) AND 1(b) notice, to date I have only received an example of a 1(a) notice, although you have told me that no 1(b) notices have been served in the last 5 years you have not stated that you do not have the information requested nor have you supplied an example of a 1(b) notice.

I also asked for the most common condition applied in a section 1(b) notice - I have been sent conjecture and supposition but no facts regarding this, nor have I been sent a statement saying you do not hold this information.

Both of the above should have either been supplied to me or a statement explaining delay or a statement that you do not hold the information by 6th February 2013, therefore you have defaulted on your obligations under FoI.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/nu...

Yours faithfully,

Paul Malpas

foi, Bridgend County Borough Council

Dear Mr Malpas,
I acknowledge receipt of your request for a review of your Freedom of Information request ref no. X01-1309 and confirm that I have made a arrangements for a review to be undertaken. We will be in contact with you again shortly.
Yours sincerely,
Charlotte Branford.

Freedom of Information Office
Bridgend County Borough Council
Level 2, Civic Offices
Angel Street
Bridgend
CF31 4WB
Tel: 01656 643565
Email: [Bridgend Council request email]

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foi, Bridgend County Borough Council

Dear Mr Malpas

 

RE: REVIEW OF FREEDOM OF INFORMATION REQUEST X01-1309

 

I write in response to your email correspondence of 21 February 2013
requesting a review of the Authority’s response in relation to your
request regarding the number of Notices issued under Section 184 of the
Highways Act 1980. 

 

Having reviewed your request for information, I respond as follows to the
points raised in your email of 21 February:

 

 1. The Authority does not currently have an example of a Section 1(b)
Notice.  I would advise you that the computerised system that
currently records the issuing of Notices was introduced in 2005, and
having checked that system there is no record of a Section 1(b) Notice
having been issued in that time period and therefore no example is
available.  Prior to the introduction of the system copies of any
Notices that were issued would be held on a paper file, and these
would have all been archived.  I would therefore advise that whilst we
may or may not hold an example of a Notice issued pre 2005, we have
estimated that the cost of complying with your request will exceed
£450.  We have made this calculation in accordance with the Freedom of
Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees)
Regulations 2004.  This calculation is based on an hourly rate of
£25.00 for the cost of locating, retrieving and extracting any
information held in the processing of your request.  I would advise
you that the archive has been cleared at various times and documents
that are no longer considered required are destroyed.  It may
therefore be the case that we no longer hold Section 1(b) Notices that
have been issued (if any). 

 

 2. I am satisfied that the Authority has already advised you that in
general terms and not in relation to a specific time period, the
condition that would normally be issued relating to Section 184 would
be for the owner or occupier to arrange for works to be undertaken to
construct a vehicular access that would be suitable for the specific
footway or verge.  I note your comments that this information is
conjecture and supposition as the Authority is not aware of any
Notices under Section 1(b) being issued in the last 5 years, however,
I confirm that to answer your request as to the most common condition
applied based on facts or to confirm that we do not hold this
information would involve a search of our pre 2005 documents as
indicated above.  I would therefore reiterate that whilst we may or
may not hold Notices issued pre 2005, we have estimated that the cost
of complying with your request will exceed £450.  This calculation is
based on an hourly rate of £25.00 for the cost of locating, retrieving
and extracting any information held in the processing of your request.

 

Under Section 12 of the Act, we are not obliged to comply with a request
for information if we estimate that the cost of compliance would exceed
£450.  This letter is therefore a formal Refusal Notice under Section
17(5) of the Act.   If you wish to pay for a full search and retrieval
fee, we may be prepared to consider your request under Section 13 of the
Act which allows us to charge a fee when the estimated costs exceed the
£450 limit.  If you are prepared to pay a fee please let us know and we
will issue a formal fees notice. 

 

Please accept my apologies on behalf of the Authority for not advising you
of the above in the original response. 

 

You will be aware that you may appeal this decision to the Information
Commissioner who may be contacted at:

            

Information Commissioner’s Office Wales

Cambrian Building

Mount Stuart Square

Cardiff, CF10 5FL

           

Tel:  02920 2044 8044            Email : [1][email address]

Fax:  02920 2044 8045           Website: 
[2]www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

 

L Griffiths

For Assistant Chief Executive Legal and Regulatory Services

 

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Dear foi,

I regret I remain confused.

Your response section 1 starts with the unequivocal statement " 1. The Authority does not currently have an example of a Section 1(b)Notice." You then go on to say that you may or may not have one. Which is it?

Is your refusal to comply based on the cost of 18 man hours to determine if you have the information or to actually find the information. Will the cost overrun the £450 limit to comply with the request to give details of the most common condition applied or is it to find a single example copy of a notice or are you saying it would take over 18 man hours to do either.

I find it difficult to believe that it would take 18 man hours to look through your archive unless it has no order to it whatsoever, however I will not be referring this matter to the IOC as I believe in a way you have actually answered my question in as much as you have confirmed that the three times repeated statement concerning "what conditions would normally be made in a s1(b) notice" cannot possibly be based on any evidential data - this I have concluded from you saying that you may not have any past notices at all and if you do have one they are prohibitively expensive to locate.

I would also question the statement
"in general terms and not in relation to a specific time period, the condition that would normally be issued relating to Section 184 would be for the owner or occupier to arrange for works to be undertaken to
construct a vehicular access that would be suitable for the specific footway or verge"
The condition on the use of the footway or verge as a crossing is to arrange for works to be undertaken to construct a vehicular access.... This does not make sense and would, if it was ever issued, constitute an illegal notice - when for instance would the owner occupier be committing an offence under 184 (17)? Would he not be committing an offence if he continued to cross the footway / verge but had made arrangements? would he have to cease crossing until the arrangements were in place? would he have to cease crossing until the actual work to which the arrangements had been undertaken? The fact that these questions arise shows that such a condition could not possibly be realistic.

In case there is any confusion this response is not a further enquiry and is not a request to continue with the original request.

Yours sincerely,

Paul Malpas

foi, Bridgend County Borough Council

Dear Mr Malpas,

 

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION REQUEST X01- 1390

 

We refer to your email dated 5 February 2013 which contained a request for
information as set out in italics below.  Following consideration of your
request, in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000, I respond
to each point as follows:

 

For clarity can you state if you have EVER issued a 1(b) notice?

 

There is no record on the Authority’s computerised system which was
introduced in 2005 of a 1(b) notice being issued.  Prior to the
introduction of the computerised system, copies of any 1(b) notice will be
held on paper files in an archive. 

 

Therefore whilst we may hold the information requested, we have estimated
that the cost of complying with your request will exceed £450.  We have
made this calculation in accordance with Regulation 4 of the Freedom of
Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limits and Fees Regulations)
2004. This calculation was based on an hourly rate of £25.00 for the cost
of locating, retrieving and extracting information involved in the
processing of your request. We have estimated that it will take in excess
of 18 hours to search through our archives to locate the information
requested.

 

Under Section 12 of the Freedom of Information Act we are not obliged to
comply with a request for information if we estimate that the cost of
compliance would exceed £450.  This letter is therefore a formal Refusal
Notice under section 17(5) of the Act.

 

It may be that we can supply some information if you can refine or reduce
your request to more manageable proportions and resubmit your request so
that it brings the cost within the appropriate limit.

 

Alternatively, if you wish to pay a full search and retrieval fee, we may
be prepared to consider your request under Section 13 of the Freedom of
Information Act which allows us to charge a fee where the estimated costs
exceed the £450.00 limit.  If you are prepared to pay such a fee, please
let us know and we will issue a formal fees notice.

 

I hope this response satisfies your request. If you are dissatisfied with
the handling of the request, under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 you
have the right to request a review of the Council’s response to your
request for information.  If you wish to request a review, please write
to:

 

Mr P A Jolley

Assistant Chief Executive Legal and Regulatory Services

& Monitoring Officer

Bridgend County Borough Council

Civic Offices,

Angel Street

Bridgend, CF31 4WB

 

within 28 days of the date of this letter.  If you remain dissatisfied
with the outcome of that review, you may seek further recourse by lodging
an appeal with the Information Commissioner at:

 

Information Commissioner‚Äôs Office ‚Äď Wales

2^nd Floor

Churchill House

Churchill Way

Cardiff

CF10 2HH

Tel:  02920 678400

Fax:  02920 678399

E:mail : [1][email address]

Website:  [2]www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk

 

Yours sincerely

--

Freedom of Information Office

Bridgend County Borough Council

Level 2, Civic Offices

Angel Street

Bridgend

CF31 4WB

Tel: 01656 643565

Email: [Bridgend Council request email]

 

 

 

 

 

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