Reshaping Base Budget - Background Papers

Paul Byers made this Freedom of Information request to Cardiff Council

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

Response to this request is long overdue. By law, under all circumstances, Cardiff Council should have responded by now (details). You can complain by requesting an internal review.

Dear Cardiff Council,

In the report tabled at Full Council on 23 July, several references are made to the Reshaping Base Budget approach.

Can you send me a list of the background material that exists from this exercise and let me know how I can get access to electronic versions of these?

Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.

Yours faithfully,

Paul Byers

Cardiff Council

Dear Mr Byers

Thank you for your Freedom of Information request.

Your query has been assigned the Reference: FOI07092

Should we require any additional information in order to process your request we will contact you.
The Council aims to deal with your request within the statutory timeframes.

Please quote this reference number if you need to contact us regarding your request, the Council's contact details are below.

Improvement & Information - Gwella a Gwybodaeth
City of Cardiff Council - Cyngor Dinas Caerdydd
Room 401, County Hall, Atlantic Wharf Cardiff Ystafell 401, Neuadd y Sir, Glanfa'r Iwerydd, Caerdydd, CF10 4UW
Tel: 029 2087 2087
Ffôn:029 2087 2088

Cardiff Council

2 Attachments

Dear Mr Byers

Please find attached a response to your Freedom of Information request - FOI07092.

If you have any queries or concerns, are in any way dissatisfied with the handling of your request please do not hesitate to contact us.

If you believe that the information supplied does not answer your enquiry or if you feel we have not fully understood your request, you have the right to ask for an independent review of our response. If you wish to ask for an Internal Review please set out
in writing your reasons and send to the Operational Manager, Improvement & Information, whose address is available at the bottom of this letter.

You also have a right under section 50 of the Freedom of Information Act to ask the Information Commissioner to review our handling of your request. The Commissioner will normally require you to ask us to undertake an internal review before considering an
application.

Yours sincerely

Improvement & Information - Gwella a Gwybodaeth
City of Cardiff Council - Cyngor Dinas Caerdydd
Room 401, County Hall, Atlantic Wharf Cardiff Ystafell 401, Neuadd y Sir, Glanfa'r Iwerydd, Caerdydd, CF10 4UW
Tel: 029 2087 2087
Ffôn:029 2087 2088

Dear Cardiff Council,
Thank you for your response.

The attached graphic wasn’t what I was expecting in reply to a request for a list of background documents from the completed ‘Rebuilding Base Budget’ exercise, so I’ll leave that as still ‘on the table’ for you to provide a more complete response.

In the meantime, as the diagram does offer several opportunities for follow-up questions by breaking the process in stages, I’d also like to make a specific request for further details and background material from Stage 1 ‘Identify Shape of Service’?

I’m particularly interested at this point in our exchange to see the results of the first two steps ‘Define existing services’ and ‘Establish current cost of service (Budget Analysis Sheets).

All the best

Paul Byers

Cardiff Council

Dear Mr Byers

Thank you for your request for information about :

Details and Background Material from Stage 1 ‘Identify Shape of Service’

which was received on 03/08/2015

The department reasonably requires further information in order to identify and locate the information that you have asked for.

To enable us to process your request and provide the information that you are expecting please can you define and specify two points.

1. What specific information you are requesting regarding background documents from the completed ‘Rebuilding Base Budget’
2. What specific information you are requesting regarding further details and background material from Stage 1 ‘Identify Shape of Service’?

If you wish to discuss any of the above, please contact me. Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.

Yours sincerely,

Improvement & Information - Gwella a Gwybodaeth
City of Cardiff Council - Cyngor Dinas Caerdydd
Room 401, County Hall, Atlantic Wharf Cardiff Ystafell 401, Neuadd y Sir, Glanfa'r Iwerydd, Caerdydd, CF10 4UW
Tel: 029 2087 2087
Ffôn:029 2087 2088

Cardiff Council

Dear Mr Byers

Thank you for your request for information about :

Details and Background Material from Stage 1 ‘Identify Shape of Service’

which was received on 03/08/2015

The department reasonably requires further information in order to identify and locate the information that you have asked for.

To enable us to process your request and provide the information that you are expecting please can you define and specify two points.

1. What specific information you are requesting regarding background documents from the completed ‘Rebuilding Base Budget’
2. What specific information you are requesting regarding further details and background material from Stage 1 ‘Identify Shape of Service’?

If you wish to discuss any of the above, please contact me. Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.

Yours sincerely,

Improvement & Information - Gwella a Gwybodaeth
City of Cardiff Council - Cyngor Dinas Caerdydd
Room 401, County Hall, Atlantic Wharf Cardiff Ystafell 401, Neuadd y Sir, Glanfa'r Iwerydd, Caerdydd, CF10 4UW
Tel: 029 2087 2087
Ffôn:029 2087 2088

Cardiff Council

Dear Mr Byers

Thank you for your request for information about :

Details and Background Material from Stage 1 ‘Identify Shape of Service’

which was received on 03/08/2015

The department reasonably requires further information in order to identify and locate the information that you have asked for.

To enable us to process your request and provide the information that you are expecting please can you define and specify two points.

1. What specific information you are requesting regarding background documents from the completed ‘Rebuilding Base Budget’
2. What specific information you are requesting regarding further details and background material from Stage 1 ‘Identify Shape of Service’?

If you wish to discuss any of the above, please contact me. Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.

Yours sincerely,

Improvement & Information - Gwella a Gwybodaeth
City of Cardiff Council - Cyngor Dinas Caerdydd
Room 401, County Hall, Atlantic Wharf Cardiff Ystafell 401, Neuadd y Sir, Glanfa'r Iwerydd, Caerdydd, CF10 4UW
Tel: 029 2087 2087
Ffôn:029 2087 2088

Dear Cardiff Council,
Thank you for your message dated 3 August with its requests for clarification.

I’ll try to be more specific otherwise we’re in danger of getting into a circle of me asking ‘what’ve you got?’ and you responding ‘what do you want?’. I suppose I was hoping that the completed exercise would have included a final report, with an appendix of supporting documents, which you could have forwarded to me as a first phase. In that way, I could have seen how the approach and the associated exercise were originally conceived and started, what activities were carried out and what results were achieved.

At present I only have two documents to work from – the report to the Full Council and the diagram/Updated Appendix 6 you supplied in your previous response. These do not give me much of a guide to the raw data that appears to be one of the keys to the tables in paragraphs 78 and 79 of the Full Council report. I would like to be able to ‘walk through’ the Reshaping the Base Budget’ process and its data in my own way and come to my own conclusions.

Hopefully, this gives you a better idea of what supporting documents would be of most use to me in successfully achieving this aim.

All the best

Paul Byers

Cardiff Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Byers

Please find attached a response to your Freedom of Information request - FOI07112.

If you have any queries or concerns, are in any way dissatisfied with the handling of your request please do not hesitate to contact us.

If you believe that the information supplied does not answer your enquiry or if you feel we have not fully understood your request, you have the right to ask for an independent review of our response. If you wish to ask for an Internal Review please set out
in writing your reasons and send to the Operational Manager, Improvement & Information, whose address is available at the bottom of this letter.

You also have a right under section 50 of the Freedom of Information Act to ask the Information Commissioner to review our handling of your request. The Commissioner will normally require you to ask us to undertake an internal review before considering an
application.

Yours sincerely

Improvement & Information - Gwella a Gwybodaeth
City of Cardiff Council - Cyngor Dinas Caerdydd
Room 401, County Hall, Atlantic Wharf Cardiff Ystafell 401, Neuadd y Sir, Glanfa'r Iwerydd, Caerdydd, CF10 4UW
Tel: 029 2087 2087
Ffôn:029 2087 2088

Data Protection, Cardiff Council

Dear Mr Byers,

 

Freedom of Information Act 2000 (‘FOIA’): FOI07092

 

Further to your correspondence and correspondence from the Information
Commissioner’s Office in Cardiff I am writing to confirm the outcome of
the review of your request for information.

The information requested is considered to be exempt under Section 36 (2)
of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.  This decision has been made by
the Interim Monitoring Officer as the Council’s Qualified Person to engage
this exemption.  The following information sets out the rationale for this
decision:

 

Section 36 (2)(b)(i),(ii)

Disclosure of the working papers would result in a real and significant
risk of inhibition in the free and frank exchange of views for the
purposes of deliberation.  That would prejudice the Council’s ability to
consider and develop all potential budget opinions in a safe environment
free from the fear of external comments and/or misinterpretation of the
Council’s intentions.  Directors put forward various options in
confidence.  The exercise took place before Budget proposals were set and
was designed to help inform Directors and Cabinet in determining how
targets could be set for each directorate before final budget targets and
proposal for consultation were set. The working papers and views were
still live at the time of the requests and are still live now as they
refer not only to the current financial year but also the next two
financial years.

Disclosure would have a real and negative impact upon the Council’s
ability to effectively plan its services and discharge it obligations. 
Due to the severe effect that some of the options considered would have on
services and posts disclosure would lead to the possibility of harm o
distress caused to members of staff and members of the public, with
adverse impact on the morale of both.  This would be completed unnecessary
in the case of proposals not taken forward for formal public consultation;
and proposals which are taken forward are subject to formal public
consultation in and open environment.

The Interim Monitoring Officer also considered the factors in favours of
disclosure.  These are that the Council should be open and transparent in
what it even contemplates in relation to public money, no matter how
unrealistic or unlikely to proceed the proposals are.  This information
was being produced to get directorates to look at the impact of varying
degrees of cuts with an estimation of the impact.  The results of this
exercise were to help inform Directors and Cabinet in developing and
deciding upon the target to be set as part of budget proposals that went
out for public consultation.  In the Interim Monitoring Officer’s view any
benefit to be obtained from such public disclosure does not outweigh the
real risk that free and frank exchange of views would be inhibited if such
discussions were to be made public.  It is probable that some proposals
would never to postulated at all.

 

Section 36 (2)(c)

Disclosure of the working papers would result in a real and significant
risk of prejudice to the effective conduct of public affairs.  It would
prejudice the Council’s ability to consider and develop all potential
budget opinions in a safe environment free from the fear of external
comment and/or misinterpretation of the Council’s intentions. Directors
put forward various options in confidence.  The exercise took place before
budget proposals were set and was designed to help inform Directors and
Cabinet in determining how targets could be set of each directorate before
final budget targets and proposals for consultation were set. The working
papers and views were still live at the time of the request and are still
live now as they refer not only to the current financial year but also the
next two financial years.

Disclosure would have a real and negative impact upon the Council’s
ability to effectively plan its services and discharge its obligations.
Due to the severe effect that some of the options considered would have on
services and posts disclosure would lead to the possibility of harm or
distress caused to members of staff and members of the public, with
adverse impact on the morale of both.  This would be completely
unnecessary in the case of proposals not taken forward for formal public
consultation; and proposal which are taken forward are subject to formal
public consultation in an open environment.

The Interim Monitoring Officer also considered the factors in favour of
disclosure.  These are that the Council should be open and transparent in
what it even contemplates in relation to public money, no matter how
unrealistic or unlikely to process the proposals are.  This information
was being produced to get directorate to look at the impact of varying
degrees of cut with an estimation of the impact.  The results of this
exercise were to help inform Directors and Cabinet in developing and
deciding upon the targets to be set as part of the budget proposals that
went out for consultation.  In my view any benefits to be obtained from
such public disclosure does not outweigh the real risk that the Council
would not be able to formulate its budget proposals effectively.

 

I can advise you that a copy of the Record of the Qualified Person’s
Opinion in this matter (recorded in this correspondence) has been passed
to the Information Commissioner’s Office.

Yours sincerely,

 

Vivienne Pearson

Operational Manager Improvement and Information

 

 

show quoted sections

Mae’r Cyngor yn croesawu gohebiaeth yn Gymraeg a Saesneg a byddwn yn
sicrhau ein bod yn cyfathrebu â chi yn eich dewis iaith boed yn Gymraeg,
yn Saesneg neu’n ddwyieithog dim ond i chi roi gwybod i ni pa un sydd well
gennych. Ni fydd gohebu yn Gymraeg yn creu unrhyw oedi.

Mae'n bosibl bod gwybodaeth gyfrinachol yn y neges hon. Os na chyfeirir y
neges atoch chi'n benodol (neu os nad ydych chi'n gyfrifol am
drosglwyddo'r neges i'r person a enwir), yna ni chewch gopio na
throsglwyddo'r neges. Mewn achos o'r fath, dylech ddinistrio'r neges a
hysbysu'r anfonwr drwy e-bost ar unwaith. Rhowch wybod i'r anfonydd ar
unwaith os nad ydych chi neu eich cyflogydd yn caniatau e-bost y Rhyngrwyd
am negeseuon fel hon. Rhaid deall nad yw'r safbwyntiau, y casgliadau a'r
wybodaeth arall yn y neges hon nad ydynt yn cyfeirio at fusnes swyddogol
Cyngor Dinas a Sir Caerdydd yn cynrychioli barn y Cyngor Sir nad yn cael
sel ei fendith. Caiff unrhyw negeseuon a anfonir at, neu o'r cyfeiriad
e-bost hwn eu prosesu gan system E-bost Gorfforaethol Cyngor Sir Caerdydd
a gallant gael eu harchwilio gan rywun heblaw'r person a enwir.

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