- 2 Sep 2020
Date received: 28 Jul 2020
Date responded: 7 Aug 2020
Any flights to/from Sumburgh or Tingwall Airport and any accommodation or subsistence in Shetland Isles during the same period between 20th July 2019 and 5th August 2019 which were paid for ( either directly or indirectly or where flights were requested on any special Government rates) by the Scottish Government, including any which were taken by Government officials or by MSPs using expenses or by MSP staff/volunteers using expenses.
I enclose a copy of most of the information you requested.
An exemption under section 38(1)(b) of FOISA applies to a some of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party, i.e. names and contact details of Scottish Government officials below Senior Civil Service grade, 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.
The Scottish Government does not fund the travel of MSPs unless they happen also to be Scottish Government Ministers, and then, only when travelling in their Ministerial capacity. Therefore we do not hold information about MSP travel expenses. The Scottish Parliament proactively publishes information about MSP expenses, see: https://mspallowances.scottish.parliament.uk/. You may wish to contact the Parliament directly if you wish to seek any further information about MSPs expenses which is not already publicly available, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For future reference, details of all Ministerial engagements are proactively published by the Scottish Government, including the costs of travel and accommodation. This can be accessed at the below link:
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