FOI request (FOIR-144416135)
Alternative delivery models
Requested Wed 18 September 2019
Responded Wed 23 October 2019
I am emailing to request the following information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. My request relates to alternative delivery models used by the council as of September 17, 2019. Specifically, can you list:
(1) All Local Authority Trading Companies owned by the authority, including the following details:
(a)The name of the company
(c) Date of incorporation
(2) All Public Service Mutuals (PSM) connected to the authority, including the following details:
(a) The name of the PSM
(b) The date it was created
(c) Any other stakeholders formally involved
(d) Services provided/purpose
(3) All outsourced services, including the following details:
(a) The name of the service
(b) The date on which it was outsourced
(c) The organisation(s) that operates the contract
(d) The length of the contract
(e) The annual cost to the council of the contract
(4) All joint ventures entered into by the authority, including the following details:
(a)The name of the venture
(b)The date on which it began
(c) The other organisation(s) involved
(d) The services provided/purpose
I would like the responses in Excel format with the questions and sub-questions as column headers.
For definitions of the above terms, please see the guidance 'Alternative Delivery Models Explained' issued by the Government on 28 March 2017 ( https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/libraries-alternative-delivery-models-toolkit/alternative-delivery-models-explained)
ResponsePlease see attached excel spreadsheet.
NOTICE OF REFUSAL
The information you have requested regarding annual costs of contracts is commercially sensitive and falls under Section 43 of the Freedom of Information Act - Commercially Sensitive Information
Information prejudicing commercial interests - commercial interest relating to an organisations commercial activity and may include trading activity procurement and relationships with third parties.
The exemption afforded by Section 43 is subject to what is known as the 'public interest test'. When applying the test in a particular case a public authority is deciding whether the public interest is better served by non-disclosure than by disclosure.
Although the Freedom of Information Act does not define 'in the public interest', there is a presumption under Freedom of Information that openness is in the public interest. In applying the public interest test a public authority will take into account the distinction that has been often made by courts between things that are in the public interest, and things that merely interest the public. Where applicants have not identified public interest considerations succinctly or accurately, the public authority has a responsibility under the Act to make their own assessment of the public interest considerations in the particular case.
We have identified the following public interest factors that may be seen as encouraging the disclosure of information:
a) accountability of public spending
We consider these factors to be of limited relevance in relation to the information in question.
Public interest factors seen as encouraging non-disclosure are, generally, the exemptions themselves. In consideration of this matter we came to the following conclusions:
a) ensuring that companies are able to compete for business fairly
b) damage to reputation and/or financial interests
In weighing the factors for and against disclosure we have concluded that the likely benefit to the applicant and the wider public of disclosure is outweighed by the likely prejudice caused by such disclosure and that therefore the public interest is better served by non-disclosure.
For the reasons given above we will not be communicating to you the information you have requested.
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