- 23 Dec 2019
Date received: 3 Dec 2019
Date responded: 20 Dec 2019
You asked for the information below covering the period October 2018 to 2 December 2019 relating to the Whitesands Proposal and Public Inquiry:
1. Copies of all communications between any officer in the Managing Flood Risk Team with any officer in Dumfries and Galloway Council. This should include any notes of meetings or telephone conversations, emails and hard copy letters.
2. A note of all communications between any officer in the Managing Flood Risk Team and any officer in the relevant Ministerial departments (i.e. The Minister who will be responsible for the final decision). This should include any notes of meetings or telephone conversations, emails and hard copy letters.
3. A note of all communications between any officer in the Managing Flood Risk Team and any third party operator such as Pinsent Masons Lawyers or Gillespies Architects. This should include any notes of meetings or telephone conversations, emails and hardcopy letters.
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.
While we are enclosing a copy of most of the information you requested in respect of question 1 and our aim is to provide information whenever possible, we are applying an exception to some of the information under regulation 11(2) of the EIRs (personal information). The reasons why that exception applies are explained in the Annex to this letter.
Again, we are enclosing some information you requested in respect of point 2 and we are applying an exception under regulation 10(4)(e) of the EIRs (internal communications) to part of the information.
The reasons why that exception applies are explained in the Annex to this letter.
In respect of your third question, Scottish Government does not hold any information within the scope of your request. Therefore we are refusing your request under the exception at regulation 10(4)(a) of the EIRs. The reasons why that exception applies are explained in the Annex to this letter.
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.
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Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrews House