- A copy of all briefings prepare for the (a) First Minister, (b) Cabinet Secretary for Constitution, Culture and External Affairs and (c) Minister for special responsibility for refugees from Ukraine on the pressures faced in Edinburgh and/or Glasgow between March 2022 and September 2022.
- A copy of any options appraisals that were carried out in the process of identifying alternative temporary and longer term accommodation options for refugees from Ukraine.
Our review found that searches of our information management systems were incomplete and this reflected in an incorrect exemption being applied. We apologise for this and are taking steps to avoid recurrence.
Unfortunately following the more extensive searches I have concluded that a different decision should be substituted. For both parts of your original request, we have found section 30 was not a valid exemption and instead we are apply section 12(1) (Excessive cost of compliance) to both parts of the request.
While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the costs of locating, retrieving and providing the information requested would exceed the upper cost limit of £600. This is because there has been a large volume of briefings and accommodation options considered within the dates of your request.
Searches of our electronic records system identified 1,129 documents that may fall within the scope of your request for briefings prepared for the First Minister, Cabinet Secretary for Constitution, Culture, and External Affairs and Minister with special responsibility for refugees from Ukraine. We have calculated that sifting these documents at 2 minutes each, at a rate of £15 per hour, would cost £564.50. To calculate how long it might take to redact documents that were in scope, we sifted the first 10 documents. 4 of these documents (40%) were within scope and required around 5 minutes of redaction. If we apply this to the 1,129 documents identified, redacting 40% of these at 5 minutes each, at a rate of £15 per hour, would cost £564.50. Therefore, the total cost of sifting and redacting the information for this request would cost £1,129, exceeding the upper cost limit of £600.
Searches of our electronic records system identified 1,828 documents that may fall within the scope of your request for options appraisals that were carried out in the process of identifying alternative temporary and longer accommodation for refugees from Ukraine. We have calculated that sifting these documents at 2 minutes each, at a rate of £15 per hour, would cost £914.
You may, however, wish to consider reducing the scope of your request in order that the costs can be brought below £600 by specifying a smaller timeframe or a more specific subject matter. Requesting information from a specific week or month would yield less search results. 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.
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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