We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Marcus Combie please sign in and let everyone know.

Street Tree Emails - Subject To Privilege

We're waiting for Marcus Combie to read a recent response and update the status.

Dear FOI Team,

Hope you all have a good Christmas and New Year. Again thank-you again for your response previously!

Background:

The data held and that was made available from email account of a member of staff who has left the Council raises some further questions. For me the most important if Council Officers and Councillors committed an offense under Section 77.

"any person to whom this subsection applies is guilty of an offense if he alters, defaces, blocks, erases, destroys or conceals any record held by the public authority, with the intention of preventing the disclosure by that authority of all, or any part, of the information to the communication of which the applicant would have been entitled."

https://ico.org.uk/media/for-organisatio...

There are various emails that appear to have been title to block and conceal release, a brief selection:

"Covered by legal privilege and not subject to FOI - Gold Command - Quito" - The email didn't contain privileged information.

"Covered by legal privilege and not subject to FOI" 14 February 2018 - This email also contained no privileged information; that and it was shared between multiple external persons. Bryan Lodge included.

"Covered by legal privilege and not subject to FOI - urgent for Monday please" 01 February 2018 - Also the same, this email chain also contained no privileged information.

"FW: Release of schedule 2 (legal privilege applies exempt from FOI)" - 02 March 2018 - This is the one that baffles me the most, it was an email about a press release, there was in no shape way of form anything privileged discussed.

I believe my FOI request will serve the public interest in understanding if and how any council officers attempted to evade disclosure of information requested by members of the public. I want to know if this was lone individual or if there was a concerted conspiracy among multiple officers to evade FOI laws.

For additional public interest: Please see the public response to Yorkshire Post writer Chris Burn reporting https://twitter.com/ChrisBurn_Post/statu...

The Yorkshire Post article on this subject:
https://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/cri...

I appreciate that the FOI team my experience some internal pressure from council forces that be based on the scope of information requested. I do thank you for all the work you do, and upholding your duty to facilitate access to information to the public. If anybody has concerns about what council officers or the legal dept is asking them todo journalists can be a resource for whistleblowers too. Chris Burn and Yorkshire Post would be excellent resource.

FOI REQUEST:

From the email account of a member of staff who has left the Council referred to in your 22 November 2019 email, for the date range: Jan 2016 - date left council. Please identify and disclose an recorded information related to any of the follow: trees, street trees, STAG, protest. That in the subject of the email, contains the following or something similarly worded to achieve the same effect: "Covered by legal privilege and not subject to FOI "

Yours faithfully,

Marcus Combie

FOI, Sheffield City Council

Dear Marcus Combie,

 

Thank you for your recent request for information relating to legally
privileged emails Jan 2016-end of contract of colleague which we received
on 23/12/2019.

 

This has been logged as a Freedom of Information Request, and will be
dealt with under the Freedom of Information Act.  The reference number for
your request can be found above.

 

The Freedom of Information Act states that we must respond to you within
20 working days, therefore, you should expect to hear a response from us
by 22/01/2020.

 

In the meantime, if you have any queries please, contact us at the email
address below.

 

Thank you.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Sheffield City Council

PO Box 1283

Sheffield, S1 1UJ

Email: [1][Sheffield City Council request email]

P Please don't print this e-mail unless you really need to

 

 

From: Marcus Combie [mailto:[FOI #630088 email]]
Sent: 22 December 2019 17:57
To: FOI
Subject: Freedom of Information request - Street Tree Emails - Subject To
Privilege

 

Dear FOI Team,

 

Hope you all have a good Christmas and New Year. Again thank-you again for
your response previously!

 

Background:

 

The data held and that was made available from email account of a member
of staff who has left the Council raises some further questions. For me
the most important if Council Officers and Councillors committed an
offense under Section 77.

 

"any person to whom this subsection applies is guilty of an offense if he
alters, defaces, blocks, erases, destroys or conceals any record held by
the public authority, with the intention of preventing the disclosure by
that authority of all, or any part, of the information to the
communication of which the applicant would have been entitled."

 

[2]https://ico.org.uk/media/for-organisatio...

 

There are various emails that appear to have been title to block and
conceal release, a brief selection:

 

"Covered by legal privilege and not subject to FOI - Gold Command - Quito"
- The email didn't contain privileged information.

 

"Covered by legal privilege and not subject to FOI" 14 February 2018 -
This email also contained no privileged information; that and it was
shared between multiple external persons. Bryan Lodge included.

 

"Covered by legal privilege and not subject to FOI - urgent for Monday
please"  01 February 2018 - Also the same, this email chain also contained
no privileged information.

 

"FW: Release of schedule 2 (legal privilege applies exempt from FOI)" - 02
March 2018 - This is the one that baffles me the most, it was an email
about a press release, there was in no shape way of form anything
privileged discussed.

 

I believe my FOI request will serve the public interest in understanding
if and how any council officers attempted to evade disclosure of
information requested by members of the public. I want to know if this was
lone individual or if there was a concerted conspiracy among multiple
officers to evade FOI laws.

 

For additional public interest: Please see the public response to
Yorkshire Post writer Chris Burn reporting
[3]https://twitter.com/ChrisBurn_Post/statu...

 

The Yorkshire Post article on this subject:

[4]https://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/cri...

 

I appreciate that the FOI team my experience some internal pressure from
council forces that be based on the scope of information requested. I do 
thank you for all the work you do, and upholding your duty to facilitate
access to information to the public. If anybody has concerns about what
council officers or the legal dept is asking them todo journalists can be
a resource for whistleblowers too. Chris Burn and Yorkshire Post would be
excellent resource.

 

FOI REQUEST:

 

From the email account of a member of staff who has left the Council
referred to in your 22 November 2019 email, for the date range: Jan 2016 -
date left council. Please identify and disclose an recorded information
related to any of the follow: trees, street trees, STAG, protest. That in
the subject of the email, contains the following or something similarly
worded to achieve the same effect: "Covered by legal privilege and not
subject to FOI "

 

Yours faithfully,

 

Marcus Combie

 

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

 

Please use this email address for all replies to this request:

[5][FOI #630088 email]

 

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requests to Sheffield City Council? If so, please contact us using this
form:

[7]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/change_re...

 

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For more detailed guidance on safely disclosing information, read the
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[9]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/help/ico-...

 

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Dear FOI,

RE: FOI #630088

I'd like to add a second element to my request. I understand if this may reset the clock on response date.

Additional FOI REQUEST:

Please identify on a yearly basis how many records are held for the prior request exist. FromJan 2016.

If the FOI team feel that section 12(1) of FOIA) may be engaged for either request, this requestor will definitely be willing to consider how he might refine his request. And under section 16 I anticipate the council will up hold their duty to provide advice and assistance.

Thanks

Marcus Combie

FOI, Sheffield City Council

Hello Mr Combie

Further to your email enquiries, we are currently working on this request and will be responding under the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIR).

Due to the complexity and volume of the information requested it has been impracticable to respond by the deadline we gave you. Under Regulation 7(1) we are extending the deadline by 20 days to 19 February 2020. We apologise for not informing you before the original deadline. We will of course continue to work on this and should we complete our checks before this deadline we will respond accordingly.

Many thanks

Tim Sharp
Information Management Officer
Business Change and Information Solutions (BCIS)
Resources Portfolio
Sheffield City Council
PO Box 1283, Sheffield S1 1UJ
Tel: 0114 273 6388
[email address]
www.sheffield.gov.uk

show quoted sections

Dear FOI,

Hope you are doing well.

Recently I have been made aware of META request submitted by Mr Buxton in relation to FOI 116 'Operation Quito Communications Plan', in the data released I have observed some items relevant to this FOI request.

In relation to this part of my request:

"That in the subject of the email, contains the following or something similarly worded to achieve the same effect: "Covered by legal privilege and not subject to FOI "

On the 22nd October 1535 email, contains items similarly worded to achieve the same effect: "Confidential - not for publication " and "legal privilege applies exempt from FOI". There may be other permutations not disclosed already.

I also do note the FOI teams email to council officers on 06 December 2019 1430, that echoes similar themes as the premise of my request:

"Please note that although some of the emails are entitled "Legally Privileged — Not subject to FOIA" they were not legally privileged and we cannot declare that something is not subject to FOIA."

Yours sincerely,

Marcus Combie

FOI, Sheffield City Council

Dear Mr Combie

Further to our recent email regarding your request, reference number 1438, which we are processing under the Environmental Information Regulations 2004, we realise that we have not been able to provide you with our response in line with the extended deadline of 19th February, so would like to provide our apologies for this.

By way of a quick update, we are in the final stages of collating our response, but I ask for your continued patience whilst we complete this and we are aiming to provide a response to you by 28th February, if not before.

Many thanks

Sheffield City Council
PO Box 1283
Sheffield, S1 1UJ
Email: [Sheffield City Council request email]
 Please don't print this e-mail unless you really need to

show quoted sections

We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Marcus Combie please sign in and let everyone know.