Disclose information relating to the Single Building Assessment report for Lancefield Quay in Glasgow and, the correspondence between the contractor and government about the preparation of the report.
I have now completed my review and have concluded that the original decision should be confirmed with modifications. The original decision to apply exceptions under regulations 10(4)(d) and 10(5)(f) of the EIRs to the same material was incorrect. I have removed the exception under regulation 10(5)(f) and maintained the exception under regulation 10(4)(d).
Single Building Assessment Report for Lancefield Quay
The decision not to disclose information about the Single Building Assessment was based on the exception under regulation 10(4)(d) of the EIRs in relation to material that is still in the course of completion, is an unfinished document or is incomplete data.
I have confirmed that the Single Building Assessment report is not in a finished state as further testing of materials by the Building Research Establishment (BRE) is ongoing. The information on toxicology and fire testing of materials will be the subject of a report following completion of the testing. The findings will be used to update the Fire Risk Assessment element of the Single Building Assessment. This information is required before the Single Building Assessment Report can be fully accurate and considered a complete document. The report will then be provided to the homeowners at Lancefield Quay.
The contract to carry out the Single Building Assessment is between homeowners at Lancefield Quay, through their factor, and the contractor undertaking the work. Scottish Government has provided grant funding for the work but did not procure the Single Building Assessment and is not involved in the contractual arrangements. It is for the contractor to submit the final report to the factor and homeowners for review and acceptance before any decision is reached by the homeowners on wider publication. Scottish Government expects the Single Building Assessment report for Lancefield Quay to be complete in June 2023.
This exception is subject to the “public interest test” and we appreciate, in relation to openness and transparency on decision-making, there is interest in the Single Building Assessment process and the cladding situation across Scotland. However, Lancefield Quay contains private homes and is not a public building to which the public have access. It would not be in the public interest to release a document that is in an unfinished state and which does not relate to a public building where the public has access. In addition, the disclosure of an incomplete document may negatively impact on the ability of the contractor to finalise their assessment without external influence. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in upholding the exception.
Correspondence between the contractor and government
You have asked for a review of the decision not to disclose any correspondence between the contractor and government on preparation of the Single Building Assessment report for Lancefield Quay. I have checked the searches carried out as part of the original request and repeated these searches. On review, I have discovered 13 documents in relation to Lancefield Quay generally and that two of these items are correspondence from the contractor. The two items from the contractor do not relate directly to the preparation of the Single Building Assessment report.
Under the terms of regulation 10(4)(a) of the EIRs, the Scottish Government is not required to provide information that it does not hold.
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. While we recognise that there may be some public interest in information about the preparation of the Single Building Assessment at Lancefield Quay, clearly, we cannot provide information which we do not hold.
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.
Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
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