All correspondence between the Transport Minister (and her officials) with Transport Scotland and/or Network Rail since 1 July 2022.
Subsequently you have clarified to us that you are seeking information, as follows:
All correspondence relating to current or planned engineering works on the rail network in the Fife area:
- That the Minister for Transport has had with her officials at Transport Scotland within the Rail Directorate, Transport Scotland since 1 July 2022.
- That the Minister for Transport has had with Network Rail since 1 July 2022.
As the information you have requested is ‘environmental information’ for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.
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, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.
In relation to point 1 of your request, I enclose Annex A,
which includes copies of correspondence you requested. In relation to point 2, I can confirm that Scottish Government does not hold any correspondence that falls in the scope of your request.
Regulation 11(2) – Personal/third party information
An exemption under regulation 11(2) personal information of the EIRs applies to some of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party, i.e. names and contact details of individuals and companies, 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.
Regulation 10(4)(e) - internal communications
An exception under regulation 10(4)(e) of the EIRs internal communications applies to some of the information you have requested because it relates to internal exchanges and release could compromise our collective ability to reach an agreed policy position in the future.
This exception 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 some public interest in release as part of open, transparent and accountable government. However, this is outweighed by the strong public interest in maintaining the right to confidentiality of communications between officials whilst we are still developing an agreed policy position.
The information that has been redacted has been clearly marked with the relevant exception i.e. Reg 10(4)(e).
The remaining information that has been redacted is that which falls into the exception of Regulation 11(2) – Personal/third party information
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.
- File type
- 38 page PDF
- File size
- 887.7 kB
Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
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