Tax Incremental Finance (“TIF”) Administration Pilot Scheme

The request was partially successful.

Dear Aberdeen City Council,

At a meeting of the City Garden Project Management Board on 10 January 2011 it was minuted that “John Stewart to write to BW [Barry White, Chief Executive of Scottish Futures Trust Ltd] seeking to secure a pilot place for the Aberdeen TIF and setting out the City Council’s commitment to the development of the business case etc. Gerry Brough to provide BW with copies of relevant Council papers and minuted decisions. BW to seek an early decision form Ministers on securing the pilot place for Aberdeen.”

In respect of the foregoing, please provide the following information pursuant to FOISA.

1. Details of all communications between Aberdeen City Council (“ACC”) and Scottish Futures Trust Ltd (“SFT”) with regard to the securing of a pilot place for the Aberdeen TIF, including but not limited to all communications between John Stewart and Gerry Brough of ACC and SFT and the Scottish Government.
2. Full details of any positive indication received from SFT or the Scottish Government to the effect that ACC would secure a pilot TIF.

Yours faithfully,

Mark Watson

Mark Watson left an annotation ()

The minutes referred in this request can be found here ...

http://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct...

Foi Enquiries, Aberdeen City Council

Dear Mr Watson,

Information enquiry reference FOI-11-0049.

Thank you for your recent request for information, which we received on
24 October 2011.

The scheduled date for our response to your request for information is
21 November 2011.

Please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any queries in the
meantime.

Yours sincerely,

Jean Reid
FOI Compliance Assistant

Freedom of Information Compliance Team
Legal and Democratic Services
Corporate Governance
Aberdeen City Council
Marischal College
Lower Ground North
Business Hub 2
ABERDEEN
AB10 1AQ
Tel: 01224 522875/523430/523602
Fax: 01224 264201
email: [Aberdeen City Council request email]

show quoted sections

Foi Enquiries, Aberdeen City Council

23 Attachments

Dear Mr Watson,

Thank you for your information request of 24 October 2011, made under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA). Aberdeen City Council (ACC) has completed the necessary search for the information requested.

At a meeting of the City Garden Project Management Board on 10 January 2011 it was minuted that “John Stewart to write to BW [Barry White, Chief Executive of Scottish Futures Trust Ltd] seeking to secure a pilot place for the Aberdeen TIF and setting out the City Council’s commitment to the development of the business case etc. Gerry Brough to provide BW with copies of relevant Council papers and minuted decisions. BW to seek an early decision form Ministers on securing the pilot place for Aberdeen.”

In respect of the foregoing, please provide the following information pursuant to FOISA.

1. Details of all communications between Aberdeen City Council (“ACC”) and Scottish Futures Trust Ltd (“SFT”) with regard to the securing of a pilot place for the Aberdeen TIF, including but not limited to all communications between John Stewart and Gerry Brough of ACC and SFT and the Scottish Government.
Please refer to the attached copies of all correspondence between ACC and SFT to date (24 October 2011), with regard to securing of a pilot place for the Aberdeen TIF.

Please note that the name of an ACC officers below Head of Service level have been redacted (blacked out) from the attached Item 2, as they would not expect ACC to disclose this information. Please refer to the attached Section 38(1)(b) exemption notice.

2. Full details of any positive indication received from SFT or the Scottish Government to the effect that ACC would secure a pilot TIF.
ACC does not hold this information as we have received no correspondence to this effect. Please refer to the Information Not Held notice.

We are unable to provide you with 1. names in the attached correspondence (Item 2) between Aberdeen City Council and Scottish Futures Trust Ltd with regard to the securing of a pilot place for the Aberdeen TIF, including but not limited to all communications between Councillor John Stewart and the Project Director, Economic and Business Development, of Aberdeen City Council and the Scottish Futures Trust Ltd and the Scottish Government as it is exempt from disclosure. In order to comply with its obligations under the terms of Section 16 of the FOISA ACC must issue official refusal notices in relation to any requests for which it is claiming an exemption under the FOISA. We therefore attach a refusal notice which specifically refuses your request under the terms of Section 38(1)(b) - Third Party Personal Information - of the FOISA.

We are unable to provide you with information on 2. full details of any positive indication received from Scottish Futures Trust Ltd or the Scottish Government to the effect that Aberdeen City Council would secure a pilot TIF as it is not held by ACC. In order to comply with its obligations under the terms of Section 17 of the FOISA, ACC must issue an official notice in relation to any requests for information not held by it. We therefore attach an Information Not Held notice.

We hope this helps with your request.

Yours sincerely,

Anna Buchan
Freedom of Information Compliance Officer

FURTHER INFORMATION

If you are unhappy with the response to your request for information, or the way in which your request has been handled, you can submit a complaint or request a review of our response. You should do this 40 days after receipt of this information. To complain or request a review, write to:

City Archivist
Legal and Democratic Services
Aberdeen City Council
Old Town House
Broad Street
Aberdeen
AB10 1AQ
[email address]

Your request for review must include your name, an address, and your reason(s) for requesting a review. You should also include the reference number for your original request for information.

If you are not satisfied with the outcome of your request for review, you can apply directly to the Office of the Scottish Information Commissioner (OSIC) for a decision. Generally, OSIC cannot make a decision unless you have been through the Council’s review procedure. The Scottish Information Commissioner can be contacted at:

The Office of the Scottish Information Commissioner
Kinburn Castle
Doubledykes Road
St Andrews
Fife
KY16 9DS
www.itspublicknowledge.info

show quoted sections

Dear Foi Enquiries,

RE: FOI 11 0049

I am not satisfied with the outcome of this request for information. I therefore request that ACC conduct a review.
The particular matters that give rise to my request for a review are as follows:
(1) Please address whether this request should have been dealt with under the provisions of the EIR, on the basis that the request relates to the funding of proposed development.
(2) I note that your response does not disclose the TIF submission made by ACC to SFT on or about 19/8/2011. In light of this omission I have grave doubts as to the adequacy of the disclosure provided, and note that the majority of the documentation provided to me dates from 2010. Further, I note in item 2(e) in the disclosure provided to me that it states as follows “7/4/2011 … PMB to approve final TIF business case report, following up to three months of negotiations with Scottish Futures Trust (SFT)”. There is nothing in the material disclosed to me that contains any details of “negotiations” with SFT. Did such negotiations take place? If so, what were the details of those negotiations and why have those details not been disclosed to me to date? I therefore request that the adequacy of disclosure in relation to my request is thoroughly reviewed.
(3) Please specifically address the issue of the letter that John Stewart stated that he would write to SFT (as referred to in my original request for information). Has Councillor Stewart been asked to produce the letter? Does such a letter exist? If it was not written, please provide details of why the letter was not written.
(4) In relation to your response to request no. 2, you state that “ACC does not hold this information as we have received no correspondence to this effect”. My request was not limited solely to “correspondence”. Please confirm whether any representation (oral or otherwise) was made to representatives of ACC either by representative of SFT and/or the Scottish Government, and if so please provide details of any such representation.

Thank you for your assistance.

Yours sincerely,

Mark Watson

Vikki Cuthbert, Aberdeen City Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Watson
 
Please refer to the attached letter in response to your request for a
review of your recent FOI enquiry.
 
Thank you
 
 
Vikki Cuthbert
Committee Manager/IMLO for Legal and Democratic Services

Legal and Democratic Services
Corporate Governance
Aberdeen City Council
Town House
Broad Street
ABERDEEN AB10 1AQ

email: [email address]
Direct Dial Tel: 522520
Direct Fax No: 523768

Tel No: 522000
www.aberdeencity.gov.uk

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"IMPORTANT NOTICE:  This e-mail (including any attachment 
to it) is confidential, protected by copyright and may be 
privileged.  The information contained in it should be used 
for its intended purposes only.  If you receive this e-mail in 
error, notify the sender by reply e-mail, delete the received e-
mail and do not make use of, disclose or copy it. Whilst we 
take reasonable precautions to ensure that our emails are 
free from viruses, we cannot be responsible for any viruses 
transmitted with this e-mail and recommend that you subject 
any incoming e-mail to your own virus checking procedures.  
Unless related to Council business, the opinions expressed in 
this e-mail are those of the sender and they do not 
necessarily constitute those of Aberdeen City Council. Unless 
we expressly say otherwise in this e-mail or its attachments, 
neither this e-mail nor its attachments create, form part of or 
vary any contractual or unilateral obligation. Aberdeen City 
Council's incoming and outgoing e-mail is subject to regular 
monitoring.

Vikki Cuthbert, Aberdeen City Council

2 Attachments

Dear Mr Watson,
 
Please refer to the attached letter and outcome notice, in relation to
your recent FOI review.
 
 
Vikki Cuthbert
Committee Manager/IMLO for Legal and Democratic Services

Legal and Democratic Services
Corporate Governance
Aberdeen City Council
Town House
Broad Street
ABERDEEN AB10 1AQ

email: [email address]
Direct Dial Tel: 522520
Direct Fax No: 523768

Tel No: 522000
www.aberdeencity.gov.uk

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"IMPORTANT NOTICE:  This e-mail (including any attachment 
to it) is confidential, protected by copyright and may be 
privileged.  The information contained in it should be used 
for its intended purposes only.  If you receive this e-mail in 
error, notify the sender by reply e-mail, delete the received e-
mail and do not make use of, disclose or copy it. Whilst we 
take reasonable precautions to ensure that our emails are 
free from viruses, we cannot be responsible for any viruses 
transmitted with this e-mail and recommend that you subject 
any incoming e-mail to your own virus checking procedures.  
Unless related to Council business, the opinions expressed in 
this e-mail are those of the sender and they do not 
necessarily constitute those of Aberdeen City Council. Unless 
we expressly say otherwise in this e-mail or its attachments, 
neither this e-mail nor its attachments create, form part of or 
vary any contractual or unilateral obligation. Aberdeen City 
Council's incoming and outgoing e-mail is subject to regular 
monitoring.

Foi Enquiries, Aberdeen City Council

3 Attachments

Dear Mr Watson

We are writing in reference to the review panel outcome of 2 December 2011 and letter of 5 December 2011 from the City Archivist regarding your recent request for a review.

Aberdeen City Council (ACC) has completed the necessary search for the information requested. As the information which you have requested is environmental information (as defined under Regulation 2(1) of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (the EIRs)), we cannot disclose the information to you through the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), and must issue a refusal notice to you under Section 39(2) of FOISA to that effect. However, you have a separate right to access the information which you have requested under Regulation 5 of the EIRs.

(1) Please address whether this request should have been dealt with under the provisions of the EIR, on the basis that the request relates to the funding of proposed development.
Please refer to point 1 of the attached review panel outcome of 2 December 2011.

2(a) I note that your response does not disclose the TIF submission made by ACC to SFT on or about 19/8/2011. In light of this omission I have grave doubts as to the adequacy of the disclosure provided, and note that the majority of the documentation provided to me dates from 2010.
ACC confirms that the TIF submission was placed on its website on 4 October 2011 and is available at the following web page:
http://www.aberdeencity.gov.uk/nmsruntim.... Please refer to the attached Regulation 6(1)(b) exception notice.

2(b) Further, I note in item 2(e) in the disclosure provided to me that it states as follows “7/4/2011 … PMB to approve final TIF business case report, following up to three months of negotiations with Scottish Futures Trust (SFT)”. There is nothing in the material disclosed to me that contains any details of “negotiations” with SFT. Did such negotiations take place? If so, what were the details of those negotiations and why have those details not been disclosed to me to date? I therefore request that the adequacy of disclosure in relation to my request is thoroughly reviewed.
In relation to point 2A. of the attached review panel outcome, ACC confirms that it does not hold details of negotiations with Scottish Futures Trust (SFT). Please refer to the attached Information Not Held notice.

(3) Please specifically address the issue of the letter that John Stewart stated that he would write to SFT (as referred to in my original request for information). Has Councillor Stewart been asked to produce the letter? Does such a letter exist? If it was not written, please provide details of why the letter was not written.
ACC confirms that its Economic and Business Development Service does not hold Councillor John Stewart's letter or information relating to it. Please refer to the attached Information Not Held notice.

(4) In relation to your response to request no. 2, you state that “ACC does not hold this information as we have received no correspondence to this effect”. My request was not limited solely to “correspondence”. Please confirm whether any representation (oral or otherwise) was made to representatives of ACC either by representative of SFT and/or the Scottish Government, and if so please provide details of any such representation.
ACC confirms that at the time of your information request (24 October 2011) it did not hold any information over and above correspondence regarding whether any representation (oral or otherwise) was made to representatives of ACC. Please refer to the attached Information Not Held notice.

As the 2(a) TIF Submission is already publicly accessible on the ACC website, this information is excepted from disclosure. In order to comply with its obligations under the terms of Regulation 13 of the EIRs ACC must issue official refusal notices in relation to any requests for which it is claiming an exception under the EIRs. We therefore attach a refusal notice which specifically refuses your request under the terms of Regulation 6(1)(b) - Form and Form of Information - of the EIRs.

We are unable to provide you with 2(b) details of negotiations with Scottish Futures Trust (SFT), 3. the letter that Councillor John Stewart stated that he would write to SFT and 4. any information over and above correspondence regarding whether any representation (oral or otherwise) was made to representatives of ACC as it is not held by ACC. In order to comply with its obligations under the terms of Regulation 10(4)(a) - Information Not Held - of the EIRs, ACC must issue an official notice in relation to any requests for information not held by it. We therefore attach an Information Not Held notice.

We hope this helps with your request.

Yours sincerely,

Anna Buchan
Freedom of Information Compliance Officer

FURTHER INFORMATION

If you are not satisfied with the outcome of your request for review, you can apply directly to the Office of the Scottish Information Commissioner (OSIC) for a decision. Generally, OSIC cannot make a decision unless you have been through the Council’s review procedure. The Scottish Information Commissioner can be contacted at:

The Office of the Scottish Information Commissioner
Kinburn Castle
Doubledykes Road
St Andrews
Fife
KY16 9DS
www.itspublicknowledge.info

show quoted sections

Philip Astley, Aberdeen City Council

3 Attachments

Dear Mr. Watson
 
Following your recent appeal to the Office of the Scottish Information
Commissioner, a number of additional documents relevant to your original
request have subsequently been identified. These should have been supplied
to you at the time, and on behalf of Aberdeen City Council I would like to
apologise for this.
 
OSIC have requested that these now be released to you - please see the
attachments to this email.
 
Please note that a small amount of third party personal information has
been redacted - see the attached refusal notice.
 
Yours sincerely
Phil Astley

 
 
Phil Astley
City Archivist
Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire Archives
Legal and Democratic Services
Corporate Governance
Town House
Broad Street
Aberdeen AB10 1AQ

[email address]
Direct Dial: 01224 522116
Fax: 01224 522310

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"IMPORTANT NOTICE:  This e-mail (including any attachment 
to it) is confidential, protected by copyright and may be 
privileged.  The information contained in it should be used 
for its intended purposes only.  If you receive this e-mail in 
error, notify the sender by reply e-mail, delete the received e-
mail and do not make use of, disclose or copy it. Whilst we 
take reasonable precautions to ensure that our emails are 
free from viruses, we cannot be responsible for any viruses 
transmitted with this e-mail and recommend that you subject 
any incoming e-mail to your own virus checking procedures.  
Unless related to Council business, the opinions expressed in 
this e-mail are those of the sender and they do not 
necessarily constitute those of Aberdeen City Council. Unless 
we expressly say otherwise in this e-mail or its attachments, 
neither this e-mail nor its attachments create, form part of or 
vary any contractual or unilateral obligation. Aberdeen City 
Council's incoming and outgoing e-mail is subject to regular 
monitoring.

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