University bus service subsidies

Adam Hodgson made this Freedom of Information request to University of East London as part of a batch sent to 16 authorities

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 partially successful.

Dear University of East London,

I am writing to request information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

I would like to know:

1. The subsidies provided by the university, to external bus companies operating university bus routes, for the last 5 complete academic years (2014/15 to 2018/19), broken down by the following where possible:
o Student travel
o University staff travel
o Any other subsidy provided
If the breakdown is not possible, a single subsidy figure for each academic year would be acceptable.

2. The expenditure on, and income from, any university provided bus services, including shuttle buses, for the last 5 complete academic years (2014/15 to 2018/19), broken down by the following where possible:
o Student travel
o University staff travel
o Bus staff salary
o Equipment costs, covering vehicles and facilities
o Any other operating costs
If the breakdown is not possible, a single expenditure and single income figure for each academic year would be acceptable.

3. The number of complaints received by the university regarding university bus services, for the last 5 complete academic years (2014/15 to 2018/19).

If the data is collected in financial years, rather than academic years, please do provide the information in this format, for the last 5 financial years (including 2018-19 if possible), making it clear which format has been used.

Yours faithfully,

Adam Hodgson

Freedom Info, University of East London

Thank you for your email to [1][University of East London request email]. If you have submitted a new
request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, this email acts as an
acknowledgement and we will process that request in line with the
legislation. If you have received a response and wish to submit a request
for an internal review we will be in touch with the results of the
internal review in due course.

If you are emailing to exercise your information rights under the Data
Protection 2018 please email [2][email address]

Best wishes
University of East London
Information Assurance Office

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[University of East London request email]
2. mailto:[email address]

Freedom Info, University of East London

5 Attachments

Dear Adam ,

 

We refer to your inquiry dated 15^th March 2020 and set out below our
response to your inquiry.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

[1][University of East London request email]

University of East London

4-6 University Way

London

E16 2RD

 

 

RESPONSE

1. The subsidies provided by the university, to external bus companies
operating university bus routes, for the last 5 complete academic years
(2014/15 to 2018/19), broken down by the following where possible:

o Student travel
o University staff travel
o Any other subsidy provided
If the breakdown is not possible, a single subsidy figure for each
academic year would be acceptable.

 

2014/2015:£103,500.92

2015/2016: £162, 109.81

2016/2017:£118,036.82

2017/2018:£155,755.91

2018/2019: £96,978.24

 

2. The expenditure on, and income from, any university provided bus
services, including shuttle buses, for the last 5 complete academic years
(2014/15 to 2018/19), broken down by the following where possible:

o Student travel
o University staff travel
o Bus staff salary
o Equipment costs, covering vehicles and facilities
o Any other operating costs

 

For this question we claim exemption from disclosure under Section  43(2)
Commercial Interest.

 

Section 43 is a qualified class based exemption. The application of this
exemption requires the considerations of a Public Interest Test, which we
have outlined below.

 

Factors in favour of disclosure

 

Accountability: Providing the expenditure for each category requested
would be of interest to some members of the public and organisations alike
and releasing the information could contribute to the openness and
accountability of university spending

 

Public Awareness and Debate: Releasing amount paid in each category may
assist individuals and organisations by raising awareness of issues which
they feel may be of relevance to them, such as the type of business and
services other companies provide to the University. This could assist them
in deciding a course of action and could contribute to a more accurate
public debate on such issues. This could also add a degree of accuracy to
current perceptions and could correct inaccurate rumour and speculation,
by identifying factors which the University may take into consideration
when it selects companies to do business with.

 

Factors Favouring Non-Disclosure

Interests of Third Parties: Commercial information such as the
University’s expenditure with service providers may adversely affect the
interests of those parties as these types of services are offered within a
competitive market and are all service providers are in direct competition
with each other and, as a result, would be damaged by the disclosure of
this information. Currently transport provision is not subject to blanket
pricing so publication of what we pay is very likely to prejudice our
negation position.

As well as potentially prejudicing the University’s commercial interests,
releasing the amounts spent with each of the individual publishers, as
requested, could prejudice our chosen publishers’ commercial interests by
weakening their position in a competitive environment and by revealing
financial information of potential usefulness to their competitors.

Competition Issues: It is in the public interest to ensure that companies
can compete fairly. Disclosure of this information is also likely to
damage the relationship between the University and the provider
 concerned. This may, in the future reduce the opportunities to purchase
the most efficient and cost effective products and services.

 

Having considered the above factors, in this case, the right of the public
to know needs to be weighed against the damage caused to the publishers
and the University itself.

On balance of interests I have concluded that the public interest does not
favour disclosure

 

3. The number of complaints received by the university regarding
university bus services, for the last     

       5 complete academic years (2014/15 to 2018/19).

 

 

Information not held as complaints are dealt with directly by third party.

If you are dissatisfied with the way the University of East London has
handled your request for information, you can request an internal  review
of this decision by contacting:

Deputy University Secretary

University of East London

4-6 University Way

London

E16 2RD

E-mail [2][University of East London request email]

 

 

If the review does not address your concerns, you can exercise a right of
appeal to the Information Commissioner at:

The Information Commissioner's Office

Wycliffe House

Water Lane

Wilmslow

Cheshire, SK9 5AF

Live Chat [3]https://ico.org.uk/global/contact-us/liv...

Tel: 0303 123 1113

[email address]. 

 

 

 

From: Adam Hodgson <[FOI #655251 email]>
Sent: 15 March 2020 12:56
To: Freedom Info <[University of East London request email]>
Subject: Freedom of Information request - University bus service subsidies

 

Dear University of East London,

I am writing to request information under the Freedom of Information Act
2000.

I would like to know:

1. The subsidies provided by the university, to external bus companies
operating university bus routes, for the last 5 complete academic years
(2014/15 to 2018/19), broken down by the following where possible:
o Student travel
o University staff travel
o Any other subsidy provided
If the breakdown is not possible, a single subsidy figure for each
academic year would be acceptable.

2. The expenditure on, and income from, any university provided bus
services, including shuttle buses, for the last 5 complete academic years
(2014/15 to 2018/19), broken down by the following where possible:
o Student travel
o University staff travel
o Bus staff salary
o Equipment costs, covering vehicles and facilities
o Any other operating costs
If the breakdown is not possible, a single expenditure and single income
figure for each academic year would be acceptable.

3. The number of complaints received by the university regarding
university bus services, for the last 5 complete academic years (2014/15
to 2018/19).

If the data is collected in financial years, rather than academic years,
please do provide the information in this format, for the last 5 financial
years (including 2018-19 if possible), making it clear which format has
been used.

Yours faithfully,

Adam Hodgson

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

Please use this email address for all replies to this request:
[4][FOI #655251 email]

Is [5][University of East London request email] the wrong address for Freedom of Information requests
to University of East London? If so, please contact us using this form:
[6]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/change_re...

Disclaimer: This message and any reply that you make will be published on
the internet. Our privacy and copyright policies:
[7]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/help/offi...

For more detailed guidance on safely disclosing information, read the
latest advice from the ICO:
[8]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/help/ico-...

Please note that in some cases publication of requests and responses will
be delayed.

If you find this service useful as an FOI officer, please ask your web
manager to link to us from your organisation's FOI page.

show quoted sections