Publication - FOI/EIR release

Fair Start Scotland programme meetings with Momentum Scotland: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Published:
6 Jul 2020
Fair Start Scotland programme meetings with Momentum Scotland: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/202000039805
Date received: 25 May 2020
Date responded: 23 Jun 2020
Information requested

"minutes of all meetings (face-to-face and electronic) between representatives of Momentum Scotland and/or the Rehab Group (MS parent company) and Scottish Government civil servants in the period 1st May 2019 to 25th May 2020 concerning Momentum Scotland’s contract with the Scottish Government to help deliver the Fair Start Scotland programme, including meetings at which Momentum Scotland’s withdrawal from the contract was discussed."

Response

I enclose a copy of the information you requested in electronic format.

An exemption under section 38(1)(b) of FOISA (personal information) applies to a small amount of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party, i.e. the names of the individuals present, and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Article 5(1) of the General Data Protection Regulation and in section 34(1) of the Data Protection Act 2018. This exemption is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

An exemption under section 33(1)(b) of FOISA (commercial interest and the economy) applies to a small amount of the information you have requested. This exemption applies because disclosure of this particular information would, or would be likely to, prejudice substantially the confidentiality of commercial information provided by Momentum Scotland and thus cause substantial harm to their commercial interests.

This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exception. We recognise that there is a public interest in disclosing information as part of open and transparent government, and to help account for the expenditure of public money. However, there is a greater public interest in protecting the commercial interests of companies which enter into Scottish Government contracts, to ensure that we are always able to obtain the best value for public money.

An exemption under section 27(1) of FOISA applies to a small amount of the information requested because we intend to publish that information within 12 weeks of the date of your request. We consider that it is reasonable to withhold the information until that date, rather than release this information before the planned publication date.

This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption. We recognise that there is some public interest in release due to the current economic climate and this will be met by our planned publication. In the meantime, there is a greater public interest in taking the time necessary to ensure the information has been properly collated and checked before it is published as planned. 
Also, we see no public interest in disrupting our programme of work to release the information ahead of the intended publication date.

About FOI

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Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG