Information

FOI response times: FOI release

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


Information requested

  • “The mean, median and maximum response times for an FOI to the Scottish Government over the last 12 months.
     
  • Also over the last 12 months, the mean, median and maximum response time for an FOI to the Scottish Government lodged by an email address with an @parliament.scot domain.
     
  • Also over the last 12 months, the mean, median and maximum response time for FOIs to the Scottish Government lodged by an email addresses with the following domains, or otherwise identified as a journalist in your system:

@the-sun.co.uk
@dailymail.co.uk
@reachplc.com
@nationalworld.com
@newsquest.co.uk
@dctmedia.co.uk
@mailonsunday.co.uk
@heraldandtimes.co.uk
@thetimes.co.uk
@pressandjournal.co.uk
@theferret.scot
@sundaypost.com
@thesun.co.uk
@jpress.co.uk
@telegraph.co.uk”

 

Response

For the purposes of responding to this request I have interpreted that the term ‘FOI’ refers to both requests and reviews that have been responded to under FOISA and requests and reviews that have been responded to under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRS). I have supplied data in order to provide an answer to the first part of your request. There were 5,788 requests received in the previous 12 months (which I have interpreted as being from 20th June 2021 to 20th June 2022), that have either been responded to or are still requiring a response at the time of your request on 20th June 2022. In order to answer your question specifically:

1. The average ‘mean’ response time for an FOI to the Scottish Government over the last 12 months is 22 days

2. I have interpreted the ‘median’ as being the case at the midpoint of the data used. The case which indicates the median or midway point of these dates is shown to have been completed and a response issued in 19 days

3. The maximum response time for an FOI response to the Scottish Government over the last 12 months is 269 days

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the costs of locating, retrieving and providing some of the information requested would exceed the upper cost limit of £600. In order to provide answers to the second and third parts of your request would require each of the 5,788 cases returned to undertake further checks to establish the email domain as requested. Allowing approximately 1 minute per case to check and record the domain would take approximately 96 hours to complete, which exceeds the 40 hour provision under FOI(S)A.

Under section 12 of FOISA public authorities are not required to comply with a request for information if the authority estimates that the cost of complying would exceed the upper cost limit, which is currently set at £600 by Regulations made under section 12. You may, however, wish to consider reducing the scope of your request in order that the costs can be brought below £600. Narrowing the time frame further may allow this part of your request to be fulfilled, or providing a specific topic to which you have an interest.

You may also find it helpful to look at the Scottish Information Commissioner's 'Tips for requesting information under FOI and the EIRs' on his website at:

http://www.itspublicknowledge.info/YourRights/Tipsforrequesters.aspx.

About FOI

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.

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

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