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Decision Summary

  • Case Ref: FS50145203
  • Date: 24 March 2009
  • Public Authority: Caerphilly County Borough Council
  • Summary: The complainant’s first request was for a breakdown of costs charged by Caerphilly County Borough Council for repairs to his home, its general schedule of rates, and the name of the national reference guideline that it used to determine those rates. The Council provided some information but withheld the remainder under section 43 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (‘the Act’). The complainant’s second request was for an anonymous letter to the Council complaining about him, the envelope and details of the date on which it had been received. The Council withheld this by reference to section 38 of the Act, but gave a summary of the allegations it contained. At internal review the Council acknowledged that the information in the second request could constitute personal data, but failed to consider section 40 explicitly. The Commissioner decided that some of the withheld information in the first request had been properly withheld under section 43(2), but that the breakdown of costs had not, and should be released to the complainant. He also decided that the information in the second request constituted the personal data of the complainant, and was therefore exempt under section 40(1) of the Act (but that the Council should have treated the request for it as a subject access request under the Data Protection Act 1998). This decision notice is currently under appeal to the Information Tribunal.
  • View PDF of Decision Notice: [1]