1. FER0899827

    The complainant, on behalf of the BBC, has requested inspection reports associated with Toddbrook Reservoir in Derbyshire. The Canal & River Trust (CRT) released the reports, having redacted some of the information in them under regulation 12(5)(a) (international relations, defence, national security or public safety) and regulation 13(1)(personal data). CRT considers the public interest favours maintaining these exceptions. The complainant disputes CRT’s reliance on regulation 12(5)(a) to withhold information falling within the scope of her request. The Commissioner’s decision is as follows: CRT is entitled to rely on regulation 12(5)(a) of the EIR to withhold some of the information the complainant has requested, and the balance of the public interest favours maintaining this exception. The Commissioner does not require CRT to take any remedial steps.
  2. FS50896044

    The complainant has requested information relating to the Queensbury Tunnel from the Department for Transport (“DfT”). The DfT refused to provide this information citing section 14(1) – vexatious request. The public authority later suggested to the Commissioner that the request could also be considered an EIR request and cited Regulation 12(4)(b) – manifestly unreasonable request. The Commissioner’s decision is that the request falls under the EIR and that Regulation 12(4)(b) is not engaged. The Commissioner requires the DfT to take the following steps to ensure compliance with the legislation. • Issue a fresh response regarding this request that does not rely on Regulation 12(4)(b) of the EIR.
  3. FER0892043

    1. The complainant has requested information from Southern Water (“SW”) relating to Ofwat’s notice of its proposal to impose a penalty on the public authority. SW refused to provide the requested information citing Regulations 12(5)(a), 12(5)(b), 12(5)(e), 12(4)(e), 12(5)(d), 12(4)(c) and 13(1). The Commissioner’s decision is that Regulation 12(5)(a) is not engaged with regard to the list of wastewater sites and that the information has been inappropriately withheld. However, she has found that SW has correctly cited Regulations 12(5)(b) and 12(4)(c) and that it is not in the public interest to release this information. The Commissioner has determined that SW does not hold any further information within the scope of this request and did not breach Regulation 5(1). However, she has determined that SW breached Regulations 5(2) and 9(2). The Commissioner requires the public authority to take the following steps to ensure compliance with the legislation. • Disclose the list of SW’s 365 wastewater treatment works.  
  4. FS50883746

    The complainant has requested information from Devon County Council (“the Council”) regarding the welfare of pupils and allegations of abuse at a specific school. The Council considered that the scope of the request covered corporate reports; that is, reports written by the Council, as well as information that may be held on individual case files. The Council stated that it did not hold any corporate reports. It also stated that it was unable to determine, within the appropriate cost limit, whether any information was held on individual case files, and therefore refused that part of the request under section 12(2) of the FOIA. The Commissioner’s decision is that the Council interpreted the scope of the request correctly. She is satisfied that, on the balance of probabilities, it does not hold any corporate reports. She has also determined that the Council was entitled to refuse the remainder of the request under section 12(2) of the FOIA and that the Council complied with its duty to provide advice and assistance in accordance with section 16(1). The Commissioner does not require the Council to take any steps.
  5. FS50866619

    The complainant has requested information about children removed from the school roll from Northumberland County Council. The Council disclosed some of the information but refused to disclose figures fewer than 6, citing section 40(2) of the FOIA – third party personal data. The Commissioner is not satisfied that the withheld information constitutes personal data, and therefore section 40(2) is not engaged. The Commissioner requires the public authority to disclose the withheld figures.