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Consultation responses and Board catering costs
FOI004
Disclosure Date:14 Apr 2010
Categories: IPSA - POLICY IPSA - BOARD IPSA - FINANCIAL
Exemptions Applied: Section 40 Section 41
Request
  • Information withheld and redacted from IPSA’s Consultation on MPs’ expenses
  • Catering costs of meetings attended by members of the IPSA Board.
  • The provision of supporting documentation setting out the rights of IPSA to rely on FOI exemptions, including the delegated authority that permits IPSA to do so.

 

Response

Question 1: Please provide me with all information redacted from the consultation responses submitted to IPSA in response to the recent Consultation on MPs’ expenses.

I can confirm that IPSA holds the information you requested in your first question.

IPSA stated in its consultation paper (page 65) that responses to the Consultation on MPs’ expenses would be published in full unless the respondent consequently indicated otherwise. IPSA did not publish the responses of those who requested non-disclosure. Where a request was made to publish their response anonymously, IPSA redacted their name. IPSA also redacted the personal information of all respondents, such as personal addresses.

In IPSA’s view, the information you requested is withheld under Section 41 (1) of the FOIA. Section 41 (1) provides an exemption to the right of access where disclosure to the public of information that has been provided to IPSA in confidence by another person would constitute an actionable breach of confidence. This is an absolute exemption and therefore not subject to a public interest test.

In IPSA’s view, the addresses of respondents and other personal information is exempt under Section 40(2) of the FOIA as we consider them to constitute the personal data of a third party. Disclosure of those particulars could constitute unfair processing of personal data and consequently a breach of the First Data Protection Principle. Section 40 (2) is an absolute exemption and therefore not subject to the public interest test.

Question 2: Please provide me with the amount spent on catering IPSA meetings (including drinks) since November 2009, where one or more of the IPSA Board were present.

I can confirm that IPSA holds the information you requested. Below is a table indicating the catering costs incurred at meetings attended by one or more of the IPSA Board Members. The list below shows meetings organised by IPSA itself (ie not speeches organised by third parties but attended by IPSA staff or Board members). The delay in providing this information was due to the length of time it took to extract figures for specific meetings. I apologise for this delay

Date

Meeting Description

Description of catering provided

Cost incurred

4 December 2009

Board Meeting. Board members, IPSA Leadership team and IPSA staff in attendance.

Non–alcoholic beverages provided

£ 18.00

7 January 2010

Launch of the Consultation Paper on MPs expenses

Non – alcoholic beverages and biscuits provided for 30 people.

£ 138.65

12 January 2010

Board Meeting. Board members, IPSA Leadership team and IPSA staff in attendance.

Non–alcoholic beverages provided for all day meeting. Sandwich lunch provided.

£ 98.15

19 January 2010

Open meeting with MPs. Board members, IPSA staff and MPs in attendance.

Non–alcoholic beverages provided.

£62.40

25 January 2010

Open meeting with MPs. Board members, IPSA staff and MPs in attendance.

Non–alcoholic beverages provided.

£77.50

8 February 2010

Open meeting with MP staff members. Board members, IPSA staff and MP staff in attendance.

Non–alcoholic beverages provided.

£69.60

9 February 2010

Open meeting with MPs. Board members, IPSA staff and MPs in attendance.

Non–alcoholic beverages provided.

£48.00

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9 February 2010

Board Meeting. Board members, IPSA Leadership team and policy team in attendance.

Non–alcoholic beverages provided

£ 21.80

 

 

 

 

24 February 2010

All-day workshop for the Board and Policy team on the expenses scheme. 17 people in attendance.

Non – alcoholic beverages provided for all day workshop. Lunch provided for all attendees.

£ 238. 00

 

 

 

26 February 2010

All-day workshop for the Board and Policy team on the expenses scheme. All day workshop. 17 people in attendance.

Non–alcoholic beverages provided for all day workshop. Lunch provided for all attendees.

£ 287.00

2 March 2010

Board Meeting. Board members, IPSA Leadership team and policy team in attendance.

Non–alcoholic beverages provided.

£ 14.20

9 March 2010

Meeting. IPSA Board and IPSA staff in attendance.

 

Non–alcoholic beverages and sandwich lunch provided.

£ 68.60

23 March 2010

Board Meeting Board members, IPSA Leadership team and policy team in attendance.

Non–alcoholic beverages and sandwich lunch provided.

£ 40.25

14 April

Board Meeting. Board members, IPSA Leadership team and policy team in attendance.

Non–alcoholic beverages and sandwich lunch provided.

£45.50

Question 3: Request for supporting documentation setting out the rights of IPSA to rely on FOI exemptions, including the delegated authority that permits you to do this.

The Rt Hon Sir Scott Baker, as an IPSA board member, has been authorised as a Qualified Person pursuant to section 36(o)(iii) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. This authorisation allows IPSA to refuse disclosure by reference to the exemption at section 36 of the Act without having to seek the approval of Ministers. A copy of this authorisation letter is attached.