PFI Advisers - Conflict of Interest

Megan Ingles made this Freedom of Information request to Derby City Council

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 Derby City Council,

I am writing to request the following information under the Freedom of Information Act.

Please confirm who your local authority has appointed as external auditor for the financial year 2016/17.

Please provide a list of all accounting firms which have advised or continue to advise the local authority on each of its PFI contracts. I am interested in companies which have provided legal, financial, governance and audit advice at any stage of the PFI project from initiation through procurement to operation.

Please provide documents showing the local authority’s current protocols around determining and declaring conflicts of interest in relation to its external auditors.

Have there been any incidences of potential or actual conflict of interest in relation to the local authority’s external auditors? If so please disclose all relevant documentation relating to this, which may include but not be restricted to emails, memos, reports and declarations of conflict of interest.

Yours faithfully,

Megan Ingles

FOI, Derby City Council

This is acknowledgement that your e-mail has been received by the Freedom
of Information team.  We will respond to you as soon as possible.

 

If you are making a Freedom of Information request you will receive a
response within the statutory 20 working day timescale.

 

Freedom of Information Team | Governance & Assurance | Resources
Directorate| Derby City Council, The Council House, Corporation Street,
Derby DE1 2FS | Telephone 01332 640763 | Minicom 01332 640666 | Web:
[1]www.derby.gov.uk

Proud of Derby

 

 

You can now visit and subscribe to the Derby Newsroom for Council news and
updates
[2]derby.gov.uk/news

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FOI, Derby City Council

Classification: OFFICIAL

Dear Megan,

Thank you for your request received 2 June 2017 under the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 (FOIA) about “PFI contracts” and “external auditors”.

 

Unfortunately, I am unable to identify the information you have requested
from the details you provided in your request.

 

In your request, you asked:

 

2. Please provide a list of all accounting firms which have advised or
continue to advise the local authority on each of its PFI contracts. I am
interested in companies which have provided legal, financial, governance
and audit advice at any stage of the PFI project from initiation through
procurement to operation.

 

4. Have there been any incidences of potential or actual conflict of
interest in relation to the local authority’s external auditors? If so
please disclose all relevant documentation relating to this, which may
include but not be restricted to emails, memos, reports and declarations
of conflict of interest.

 

Please confirm which years the requested information applies to. For
example, does the information requested relate only to the 2016/17
financial year?

 

If the requested information relates to more than the 2016/17 financial
year, then Section 12: Exceeds Appropriate Limit may apply.

 

I will not be able to deal with questions 2 and 4 from your request until
you provide the above additional information.

The Freedom of Information Act says that we must comply with your request
for information within 20 working days, from the date following receipt of
your request unless we have to ask for clarification, as in this case. 
The 20 working day response deadline will now start from the next working
day after we receive your response.  You can write to us at the address
below, e-mail us at [1][Derby City Council request email] or telephone us on 01332 640763.  
Please quote reference FOI 10175 in all correspondence.  

Unfortunately, if I don’t hear from you by 13 July 2017, we will assume
you only require information for the 2016/17 financial year for questions
2 and 4.     

Once clarification is received we will comply with your request unless the
information requested is subject to a statutory exemption on disclosure or
the information contains reference to a third party. For your information,
the Act defines a number of exemptions, which may prevent release of the
information you have requested. There will be an assessment and if any of
the exemption categories apply then the information will not be released.
You will be informed if this is the case, including your rights of appeal.
If the information you request contains reference to a third party then
they may need to be consulted before a decision is taken on whether the
information can be released to you. You will be informed if this is the
case. There may be a fee payable for supplying the information in the form
of disbursements. This will be calculated and you will be informed if a
fee is payable. The fee must be paid before the information is released
and the 20 working day time limit for responses is suspended until payment
is made. You will have 3 calendar months to submit your payment.

If you have any queries or concerns then please contact the
 
Freedom of Information Officer
Derby City Council
The Council House
Corporation Street
Derby
DE1 2FS

Telephone 01332 640763 or e-mail [2][Derby City Council request email]

Further information is also available from the Information Commissioner
at:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Telephone: 01625 545 700

[3]www.ico.org

Yours sincerely,

Freedom of Information Team | Organisation and Governance Directorate |
Derby City Council | The Council House| Corporation Street |Derby | DE1
2FS |Tel: [4]+44 (0) 1332 640763 | minicom number: [5]+44 (0) 1332
256666 | [6]www.derby.gov.uk

 

Proud of Derby

Classification: OFFICIAL

 

You can now visit and subscribe to the Derby Newsroom for Council news and
updates
[7]derby.gov.uk/news

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Dear FOI,

Question 2. This question relates to those accounting firms that have been involved in advising the local authority on PFI contracts. I imagine that there will have been a number of firms engaged during procurement and that the number and level of ongoing engagement will have reduced significantly since that time. My main interest with this request is to understand any potential conflict of interest with the council's current external auditors so I would be happy if you were to limit your response to accountancy firms in an advisory role rather than any specifically legal advisors.

Question 4. I am interested in potential or actual conflict of interest in relation to this year's external auditors only, if your external auditors have changed one or more times in the past few years it is not necessary to provide this information for each of those.

If the requested information is likely to exceed the appropriate limit, please could you set out a schedule showing how you estimate this to be the case, this will enable me to better reduce the scope of a follow up request.

Yours sincerely,

Megan Ingles

FOI, Derby City Council

This is acknowledgement that your e-mail has been received by the Freedom
of Information team.  We will respond to you as soon as possible.

 

If you are making a Freedom of Information request you will receive a
response within the statutory 20 working day timescale.

 

Freedom of Information Team | Governance & Assurance | Resources
Directorate| Derby City Council, The Council House, Corporation Street,
Derby DE1 2FS | Telephone 01332 640763 | Minicom 01332 640666 | Web:
[1]www.derby.gov.uk

Proud of Derby

 

 

You can now visit and subscribe to the Derby Newsroom for Council news and
updates
[2]derby.gov.uk/news

[3][IMG]

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FOI, Derby City Council

1 Attachment

Dear Megan Ingles,

 

Your request for information has been considered and the information
requested is attached.

 

For your information this request has cost the Council £25.00 to process.

 

Supply to you of any material does not give you the right to use it in a
way that breaches the copyright or other intellectual property rights in
that material. For example publishing or otherwise re-using it for
commercial purposes or sending any marketing material or spam emails. You
must get the consent of the copyright owner which may involve the granting
of a licence and the application of a fee.

 

This does not restrict your rights under the fair dealing provisions of
the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.

 

If you have any queries or concerns or are unhappy with the handling of
your request then please contact:

 

Freedom of Information Officer

Derby City Council

The Council House
Corporation Street
Derby
DE1 2FS

 

Telephone 01332 640763 or e-mail [1][Derby City Council request email]

 

Further information about Freedom of Information is available from the
Information Commissioner at:

 

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF 
Telephone:   01625 545 700

[2]www.ico.org.uk

 

Yours sincerely,

Freedom of Information Team | Organisation & Governance Directorate
| Derby City Council, Council House, Corporation Street, Derby
DE1 2FS| 01332 640763 | [3]www.derby.gov.uk

Proud of Derby

 

 

You can now visit and subscribe to the Derby Newsroom for Council news and
updates
[4]derby.gov.uk/news

[5][IMG]

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References

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