Request ID: FOI-2401-2223 Date published: 24 January 2023
Community Panels Pilot - please provide a full disclosure of all correspondence and notes of telephone conversations, attendance meetings and documentation sent or received in relation to initial reviews, invitation to tender documents and, as agreed a copy of the pilot agreement and contract if now concluded.
Our Ref: FOI-2401-2223
Thank you for clarifying your request asking for information about the Community Panels Pilot.
Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act and our information access policy. I can confirm we hold some of the information you require. You asked:
Please provide a full disclosure of all correspondence and notes of telephone conversations, attendance meetings and documentation sent or received in relation to initial reviews, invitation to tender documents and, as agreed a copy of the pilot agreement and contract if now concluded.
Please find attached a copy of the correspondence, notes, and associated documents that we hold regarding the Community Panels Pilot, including a copy of the final signed contract. Please note that many of the discussions for this pilot were done over the phone and we do not hold records of these conversations. Please also note that we have not sent you any emails that you would have already received directly.
In accordance with the FOI Act, we are not obliged to supply some of the information as it is subject to a statutory exemption to the right of access to information under section 43(2) – prejudice to commercial interests.
In this instance the section 43(2) exemption has been applied to some information contained within the documents as disclosure would be likely to prejudice our commercial interests, as well as those of Atlas UK Ltd. Prejudice would be likely to occur when we go out to tender for this and similar services in the future, because it would be likely to result in a clustering of bids based on how much we are receiving. Disclosing this information could also be prejudicial to Atlas UK Ltd.’s ability to compete for similar tendering opportunities with other companies or organization in the future, as their competitive edge would inevitably be prejudiced by disclosure of the sums involved.
The use of this exemption is subject to an assessment of the public interest in relation to the disclosure of the information concerned. TfL recognises the need for openness and transparency by public authorities but in this instance the public interest in ensuring that TfL is able to obtain the best value for public money outweighs the general public interest in increasing transparency of our processes.
In accordance with our obligations under Data Protection legislation some personal data has been removed, as required by section 40(2) of the FOI Act. This is because disclosure of this personal data would be a breach of the legislation, specifically the first principle of Article 5 of the UK General Data Protection Regulation which requires all processing of personal data to be fair and lawful. It would not be fair to disclose this personal information when the individuals have no expectation it would be disclosed and TfL has not satisfied one of the conditions which would make the processing ‘fair’.
This exemption to the right of access to information is an absolute exemption and not subject to an assessment of whether the public interest favours use of the exemption.
If this is not the information you are looking for, or if you are unable to access it for some reason, please feel free to contact me.
Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal.
Gemma Jacob Senior FOI Case Officer FOI Case Management Team General Counsel Transport for London