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Decision Summary

  • Case Ref: FS50078600
  • Date: 5 February 2007
  • Public Authority: Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs
  • Summary: The complainant initially requested all the communications and minutes of meetings between Defra and Department of Environment Northern Ireland concerning the implementation of the EC Waste Water Treatment Directive in Northern Ireland. When this was refused, on the basis of the application of a number of exceptions under the EIR, the complainant made a second request for a list of all communications including details of the date, type of communication, the sender and recipient and title. This was refused on the basis that such a list was not held by the public authority and, in any event, the information was exempt from disclosure under the same exceptions as for the first request. The Commissioner concluded that most of the information requested was held by the public authority and therefore regulation 12(4) (a) was incorrectly applied. However he decided that this information was exempt from disclosure under regulation 12(5) (b) as the information was covered by legal professional privilege. In addition, he found that the public authority had failed to comply with regulation 14(2), as it had not issued a refusal notice within 20 working days of receipt of the request.
  • View PDF of Decision Notice: [1]