Public Rights of Way and Greens Committee Communications

S Waters made this Freedom of Information request to Bristol 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 Bristol City Council,

With regard to the Public Rights of Way and Greens Committee

Please supply:

(1) scans of all notes made on the day of and during the meeting of 16/06/2011 by Committee members.

(2) scans of all notes made on the day of and during the meeting of 16/06/2011 by Council Executives and staff present at the meeting.

(3) copies of all notes and emails (extant and deleted) sent or received by Committee members, Council Political leaders (and their representatives/party members) and Council Executive/staff that pertain in full or in part to the meeting of 16/06/2011, made between 06/05/2011 and today's date (13/08/2011).

Yours faithfully,

Mr S Waters

Freedom of Information, Bristol City Council

Thank you for your request for information. You should expect to receive a response within the 20 working day limit.

______________________________________________________________________
'Do it online' with our growing range of online services - http://www.bristol.gov.uk/services

Sign-up for our email bulletin giving news, have-your-say and event information at: http://www.bristol.gov.uk/newsdirect

View webcasts of Council meetings at http://www.bristol.gov.uk/webcast

Bristol is the UK's first Cycling City. Visit www.betterbybike.info to join thousands of others getting around by bike.

Freedom of Information, Bristol City Council

Dear Mr Waters,
Thank you for your request for information, a copy of which is enclosed
below. As you will appreciate, the act entitles a requester to
"information". The act does not specifically entitle an individual to
request "all notes and emails". The Council will often provide copies of
documents in response to a request, but will first need clarification as
to what "information " is required. Your request is very broad, and
unclear as to exactly what "information" you were seeking in the
"notes/emails". For example it is possible that notes and emails could
relate to the content of the meeting or the organisation of the meeting.
Where a public authority requires further information to locate the
information requested, we are not obliged to comply with the request in
accordance with section 1(3) of the act. As a result we require you to
confirm what information you are seeking, ie what is it that you want to
know? We can then locate the "information" requested from the appropriate
team/document. As soon as clarification is received we will process your
request and respond in full as soon as possible.

For Head of Legal Services
Stephen McNamara

Request of Waters

Dear Bristol City Council,

With regard to the Public Rights of Way and Greens Committee

Please supply:

(1) scans of all notes made on the day of and during the meeting of
16/06/2011 by Committee members.

(2) scans of all notes made on the day of and during the meeting of
16/06/2011 by Council Executives and staff present at the meeting.

(3) copies of all notes and emails (extant and deleted) sent or
received by Committee members, Council Political leaders (and their
representatives/party members) and Council Executive/staff that
pertain in full or in part to the meeting of 16/06/2011, made
between 06/05/2011 and today's date (13/08/2011).

Yours faithfully,

Mr S Waters

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

'Do it online' with our growing range of online services -
http://www.bristol.gov.uk/services

Sign-up for our email bulletin giving news, have-your-say and event
information at: http://www.bristol.gov.uk/newsdirect

View webcasts of Council meetings at http://www.bristol.gov.uk/webcast

Bristol is the UK's first Cycling City. Visit www.betterbybike.info to
join thousands of others getting around by bike.

Dear Sir/Madam,

Thank you for your prompt response.

Please append the following requirements to my request(s), as you have advised:

For section (1):

"that have relevance to the TVG section of the Agenda"

For Section (2):

"that have relevance to the TVG section of the Agenda"

For section (3):

"that relate to the organisation of the PROWG Committee that sat on 16/06/11 and to the TVG section of the Agenda of that meeting;

specifically, communications that contain any of the following key words/phrases:

"addressing (everyone's) concerns" (or similar, including phrases such as 'hedging bets', etc.), 'investment', 'inspector', 'Ashton Vale', 'BCFC', 'stadium', 'football', 'Green Belt', 'Lansdown', 'Vence', 'Pontin', 'landowner(s)' and 'transport'.

Please can you identify any emails supplied that had been deleted by the author/recipient (as appropriate) and also (for easier reading) annotate the author of every written note or email where otherwise unidentified.

Yours sincerely,

S Waters

Dear Sir/Madam,

Your query of my request specifically gave the example "notes and emails could relate to the content of the meeting or the organisation of the meeting".

I therefore reworded my request in order to be very specific, according to your query and example therein.

I now repeat my response to your first query, with further clarifications added:

"Please append the following requirements to my request(s), as you have advised:

For section (1):

('content'; notes the member/Chair made regarding information received - whether written or verbal - before and during the meeting)

"that have relevance to the TVG section of the Agenda"

For Section (2):

('content'; notes staff members/executive made regarding information - whether written or verbal - received before and during the meeting)

"that have relevance to the TVG section of the Agenda"

For section (3):

"that relate to the organisation (that is to say, the communications regarding the appointment of the members and Chair) of the PROWG Committee that sat on 16/06/11 and to the TVG section ('content') of the Agenda of that meeting;

specifically, communications that contain any of the following key words/phrases:

"addressing (everyone's) concerns" (or similar, including phrases such as 'hedging bets', etc.), 'investment', 'inspector', 'Ashton Vale', 'BCFC', 'stadium', 'football', 'Green Belt', 'Lansdown',
'Vence', 'Pontin', 'landowner(s)' and 'transport'.

Please can you identify any emails supplied that had been deleted by the author/recipient (as appropriate) and also (for easier reading) annotate the author of every written note or email where otherwise unidentified."

Yours sincerely,

S Waters

Richard Lane left an annotation ()

Technically, you must use your real name for your request to be a valid Freedom of Information request in law.
Using S Waters as a pseudonym, or even (stillwaters), the name you use on the Ashton Gate Blogger site, neither of which are your real name, may well render this request and others you've made, unlawful in any future legal matters.

S Waters left an annotation ()

Dear Mr Lane,

May I point you to the Help section on this website:

"it is good practice for the public authority to still consider a request made using an obvious pseudonym."

http://www.ico.gov.uk/upload/documents/l...

S Waters left an annotation ()

With regard to your statement that "Technically, you must use your real name for your request to be a valid Freedom of Information request in law" - you have confused two separate areas of Law.

As per the link provided above, you are correct in that technically a 'real' name must be supplied.

However, the information provided under an FoI request is legally acceptable to a court of law regardless of the identity of the requester (with a few distinct provisos, mainly relating to the Data Protection Act).

Richard Lane left an annotation ()

Thank you Mr S waters for pointing out what I have already read and understood.
May I also point out that the council can refuse a FOI request if it is known that a pseudonym has been used, as is the case with this request.
I find it rather ironic that someone should hide behind a pseudonym, while at the same time asking for freedom of information. You could after all have made the request directly to the council, instead of using this public site.

Dear FoI Officer,

I have allowed a few day's grace onto the standard time frame - please provide a response forthwith.

Yours sincerely,

S Waters

Richard Lane left an annotation ()

Dear Mr S Waters
Please provide your real name.

Freedom of Information, Bristol City Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Waters,
 
Thank you for your clarification sent on 1 September and I apologise for
the delay in responding to you.  We have added this clarification to your
original request dated 13th August and detail below our understanding of
your clarified request. 
 
In dealing with your request, we have sought information from all
Committee members, the Chief Executive, Will Godfrey, Stephen McNamara and
Democratic Services.
 
Combined Request of 13th August and clarification of 1st September
    
     Dear Bristol City Council,
    
     With regard to the Public Rights of Way and Greens Committee
    
     Please supply:
    
     (1) scans of all notes made on the day of and during the meeting
     of 16/06/2011 by Committee members that have relevance to the TVG
section of the Agenda
     (including notes the member/Chair made regarding information
     received - whether written or verbal - before and during the
     meeting)
    
Enquiries made have revealed that this information is not held by the
Council.
 
     (2) scans of all notes made on the day of and during the meeting
     of 16/06/2011 by Council Executives and staff present at the meeting
that have relevance to the TVG section of the Agenda 
     (including notes staff members/executive made regarding
     information - whether written or verbal - received before and
     during the meeting)
 
Enquiries made have revealed that this information is not held by the
Council.
    
     (3) copies of all notes and emails (extant and deleted) sent or
received by Committee members, Council Political leaders (and their
representatives/party members) and Council Executive/staff that
     pertain in full or in part to the meeting of 16/06/2011, made
     between 06/05/2011 and today's date (13/08/2011), that relate to the
organisation (that is to say, the
     communications regarding the appointment of the members and Chair) of
the PROWG Committee that sat on
     16/06/11 and to the TVG section ('content') of the Agenda of that
meeting;
    
     specifically, communications that contain any of the following key
     words/phrases:
    
     "addressing (everyone's) concerns" (or similar, including phrases
     such as 'hedging bets', etc.), 'investment', 'inspector', 'Ashton
     Vale', 'BCFC', 'stadium', 'football', 'Green Belt', 'Lansdown',
     'Vence', 'Pontin', 'landowner(s)' and 'transport'.
    
     Please can you identify any emails supplied that had been deleted
     by the author/recipient (as appropriate) and also (for easier
     reading) annotate the author of every written note or email where
     otherwise unidentified.  As stated above we do not need to search for
deleted emails.
 
I can confirm that the Act only requires us to locate and consider
information held therefore we do not search for emails deleted prior to a
request for information being made.
 
The appointment of Councillors to a committee is a matter for the
political groups and this information is therefore not held by the
Council. The election of the Chair is a matter of public record as it is
minuted at the start of the relevant meeting.
 
As a result the only remaining aspect of this particular request is
information sent or received by Committee members, Council Political
leaders (and their representatives/party members) and Council
Executive/staff that pertain in full or in part to the meeting of
16/06/2011, made between 06/05/2011 and today's date (13/08/2011) that
relate to the TVG section ('content') of the Agenda of that meeting.
 
Please note that we have not included information previously disclosed
into the public domain such as the final set of committee papers and
public forum statements.
We can now enclose a PDF document enclosing all information held.  Please
note that personal data has been withheld in accordance with section 40(2)
of the Freedom of Information Act and or regulation 12(3) of the
Environmental Information Regulations.  Although the City council aim to
be transparent and accountable to the public, we must also protect the
personal data of less senior officers.  As a result the identity of less
senior officers have been withheld.  We can also confirm that section 42
of the Freedom of Information Act and or regulation 12(5)(b) of the
Environmental Information regulations are engaged, in relation to Legally
privileged information.  Although the City Council aims to be transparent
and accountable to the public, we must weight this against the Councils
ability to seek confidential legal advice.  As a result, we are unable to
disclose this particular information at this time.
    
For Head of Legal Services
Stephen McNamara
 
 
This response should answer your request in full, however if you are not
satisfied with this response or wish to lodge an appeal against any
exemptions that may have been applied, you can do so by writing to the
Data Protection Officer at Bristol City Council Legal Services, The
Council House, College Green, Bristol, or [1][Bristol City Council request email].  Details
of the complaints procedure can be found at
[2]http://www.bristol.gov.uk/complaints.
 
If, after you have exhausted the council’s complaints procedure, you are
still not satisfied with the response you have received you have the right
to complain to the Information Commissioner, details of your right to
complain can be found at [3]http://www.ico.gov.uk/complaints.aspx
 
Copyright notice
The provision of information by Bristol City Council under this scheme
does not imply a right to reproduce or commercially exploit such
information without the Council's express prior written permission.
Reproduction or commercial exploitation of materials supplied under this
scheme without the express permission of Bristol City Council may be an
infringement of copyright.
The Council is unable to grant permission to reproduce or re-use any
material accessed through this scheme that is the property of third
parties. Permission to reproduce or re-use such material must be obtained
from the copyright holders

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

'Do it online' with our growing range of online services -
http://www.bristol.gov.uk/services

'Visit our consultation finder and have your say:
www.bristol.gov.uk/consultationfinder'

View webcasts of Council meetings at http://www.bristol.gov.uk/webcast

Bristol is the UK's first Cycling City. Visit www.betterbybike.info to
join thousands of others getting around by bike.

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[Bristol City Council request email]
2. http://www.bristol.gov.uk/complaints
3. http://www.ico.gov.uk/complaints.aspx

PE175 left an annotation ()

Reasonable comment on this FOI request.
2 Months to answer the request.
And only 10 emails,notes and comments produced on the FOI subject.
Try again.

Dear Freedom of Information Officer,

Thank you for the information supplied so far.

However, with regard to deleted emails, you state that "the Act only requires us to locate and consider information held".

Can you therefore please confirm the length of time Bristol City Council retains backup media of emails and that emails deleted by a user are not retained as copies on the backup media.

Yours sincerely,

S Waters

Freedom of Information, Bristol City Council

Dear Mr Waters,
Thank you for your email dated 11th October, a copy of which is enclosed
below.
 
We keep a monthly snapshot of the email system.  This record is currently
kept indefinitely.  However this will not record emails that have been
deleted in between monthly snapshots.
 
For Head of Legal Services
Stephen McNamara
 
 
 
   Dear Freedom of Information Officer,  
     
     Thank you for the information supplied so far.
    
     However, with regard to deleted emails, you state that "the Act
     only requires us to locate and consider information held".
    
     Can you therefore please confirm the length of time Bristol City
     Council retains backup media of emails and that emails deleted by a
     user are not retained as copies on the backup media.
    
     Yours sincerely,
    
     S Waters

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

'Do it online' with our growing range of online services -
http://www.bristol.gov.uk/services

'Visit our consultation finder and have your say:
www.bristol.gov.uk/consultationfinder'

View webcasts of Council meetings at http://www.bristol.gov.uk/webcast

Bristol is the UK's first Cycling City. Visit www.betterbybike.info to
join thousands of others getting around by bike.

Dear Freedom of Information Officer,

Thank you for clarifying the situation.

Yours sincerely,

S Waters