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Decision Summary

  • Case Ref: FS50099820
  • Date: 7 September 2009
  • Public Authority: Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs
  • Summary: The complainant requested information from Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) relating to the legal advice used by Defra to formulate its view on whether EU Procurement Directives allow social criteria to be taken into account in public procurement. The Commissioner finds that Defra was correct to withhold the information under regulation 12(4)(e) of the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (the EIR) as the withheld information is comprised of internal communications and, in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exception to disclosure provided by regulation 12(4)(e) of the EIR outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information. In failing to provide the complainant with notice of its decision in response to the representations of the complainant under regulation 11(1) of the EIR, within the appropriate time period, that is no later than forty days after the date of receipt of those representations, Defra has failed to comply with regulation 11(4) of the EIR.
  • View PDF of Decision Notice: [1]