Which bodies are subject to the Environmental Information Regulations?
The Freedom of Information Act includes a list of public authorities that it covers, working out whether a body is subject to the Environmental Information Regulations is much more difficult:
In the Port of London case, one of the issues the Tribunal considered was whether the PLA constituted a public authority for the purposes of regulation 2(2)(c) EIR. The Commissioner put forward the following factors, which he considered were to be taken into account in determining this issue, and which the Tribunal found “helpful”:
- whether the functions exercised by the ‘public authority’ are typically governmental in nature;
- whether the functions of the body in question form part of a statutory scheme of regulation;
- whether, if those functions did not exist, some governmental provision would need to be made for the exercise of those functions;
- whether the organisation has a statutory basis, or whether it exists purely as a matter of contract; and
- whether the organisation is accountable to members or shareholders, or to government.