DARTFORD
BOROUGH COUNCIL
Refer to the
attached
Notes for
guidance
REQUEST FOR ACCESS TO INFORMATION UNDER
THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000
OR THE
ENVIRONMENTAL INFORMATION REGULATIONS
2004
Note 2
Please read the Guidance accompanying this Application Form BEFORE you complete this Form. You
may also visit Dartford Borough Council’s website www.dartford.gov.uk. which has been designed as a
dedicated guide to, and source of, information about the Council. If you do not have access to the
internet, please contact the Freedom of Information Officer for advice and assistance.
Please complete this Form as clearly and as fully as possible
Notes 1
To:
and 6
The Freedom of Information Officer
The Freedom of Information Unit
Dartford Borough Council
Room E3
Civic Centre
Home Gardens
Dartford
Kent
DA1 1DR
DX: 142726 Dartford 7
Email: foi@dartford.gov.uk
Web-site: www.dartford.gov.uk
Notes 2:3:4
I wish to request access to the following information, which I believe to be held by Dartford Borough
and 11
Council. I understand that I may be required to pay a fee for the information and that where a fee
applies, the information will not be released by the Council until the fee has been paid.
Detail sufficiently precisely the information requested
Notes 2
and 6
My request applies to information from
to
Freedom of Information/Requests Procedure/Application Form and Guidance Note
13 June 2019
1
Note 5
I understand that I will not normally be given access to the information which affects the legal rights of
third parties unless the third party agrees to its release.
Note 10
I understand that the Council may not hold the information I am requesting and that the Council may
need to consider whether it is appropriate for my application (in whole or in part) to be transferred to
another public body. Where this is the case, I consent to my application being transferred
.
Notes 1:
3:4:5:8 and
14
I understand that some or all of the information I am requesting may be exempt from disclosure and
that where this is the case, I will be provided with an explanation as to why the information (in whole or
in part) cannot be released.
Note 12
My preferred form of access to the information is: (tick whichever is appropriate)
1. View/inspect original information
2. Receive copies by post
3. Receive electronic copies
4. Receive a digest or summary of
the information by post or email
5. Other (please specify)
NB: The Council will give you a reason if it is unable to provide the information in your preferred form of
access
Note 18
I understand that copyright may apply to information which is disclosed by the Council and that if I
make multiple copies of the information and/or issue copies of the information to the public that I may
require a licence from the copyright holder.
Note 6
Personal Details of Applicant
Please use BLOCK letters
Surname:
First Name:
Address:
Tel (Home):
Tel (Business):
Mobile No:
Email:
Dated:
Please let the Freedom of Information Officer know why the website www.dartford.gov.uk was not
able to satisfy your needs.
Once you have completed this form, save it, and click Submit
Freedom of Information/Requests Procedure/Application Form and Guidance Note
13 June 2019
2
Office Use Only
Date FOI request received and Monitoring Form updated:
Date request forwarded to relevant Council Department:
Date request transferred to another public body (where applicable):
Date Applicant informed of the transfer (where applicable):
Date exemptions (where applicable) considered by relevant Department (in consultation with the Freedom of
Information Officer):
Date Duty to Confirm/Deny exercised (qualified exemptions only):
Date Fees Notice issued (where applicable):
Date by which fee to be paid (where applicable):
Date fee paid (where applicable):
Date Applicant given the decision to release the information:
Date Applicant given the decision and reasons for not releasing the information and advised of the right to ask
for an internal review of the decision under the Corporate Complaints Procedure.
Date Monitoring Form updated:
DATA PROTECTION - We will use the personal information you give us to administer our access to information
functions.
Our lawful bases for processing your personal information are:
our legal obligation(s) under the Freedom of Information Act 2000
our legal obligation(s) under the Environmental Information Regulations 2004
necessary for the performance of a task in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority
vested in us as Data Controller (under the above legislation)
Dartford Borough Council, Civic Centre, Home Gardens, Dartford, Kent DA1 1DR is the Data Controller
dataprotection@dartford.gov.uk
Please refer to our Corporate Privacy Notice for further details on how we process your personal information and
your rights.
Freedom of Information/Requests Procedure/Application Form and Guidance Note
3
13 June 2019
GUIDANCE ON HANDLING INFORMATION REQUESTS
Note 1. What is Freedom of Information?
The Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOI) came into force on 30 November 2000. FOI gives you the right of
access to information held by Dartford Borough Council (the Council) although the Council may refuse access to the
information if that information falls within any of FOI's 24 exemptions (13 of which apply more specifically to local
authorities). The exemptions protect against the disclosure of information that would harm commercial interests,
information provided in confidence, personal information and other important interests.
Note 2. What can I ask for?
Your right to ask for information only relates to information held by the Council at the time you make your request.
‘Information’ may be in any form e.g. a paper document, computerised records, printouts, maps, plans, microfilm,
microfiche, audio-visual material, etc. FOI provides a right to ‘information’ rather than to records or documents.
Although you are not required to specify any particular document, you must describe the information you are
requesting in as much detail as possible. The Council publishes a wide range of information. You may first wish to
check the Council’s Publication Scheme to find out whether the information you are requesting has already been
published or if there are plans to do so. A copy of the Scheme may be obtained from the Freedom of Information
Officer at the address detailed in Note 6 below or by logging onto http//:www.dartford.gov.uk/
Note 3. Do I need to give a reason to see information?
NO. You do not have to give a reason as to why you want to see any information. The Council must give you an
explanation if you are not given what you ask for.
Note 4. Can I ask for personal information about myself?
NO. A request for personal information about yourself will automatically be treated as a subject access request
under the Data Protection Act 2018 and for the purposes of a response, the 30-day calendar period under the 2018
Act will apply. A fee may be payable. For further information email:dataprotection@dartford.gov.uk
or see our
guidance on subject access requests.
Note 5. Can I ask for personal information about a third party?
YES. Personal Information relating to a third party will be dealt with under FOI. However, before you are given
access to personal information relating to a third party, the Council may require that third party’s consent to the
disclosure particularly where the third party’s legal rights may be affected by your request e.g. where the third party’s
right to personal privacy or the right to have information treated in confidence may be prejudiced.
Note 6. How do I make a request for information?
Requests/applications must be in legible form i.e. in writing and capable of being used for subsequent reference.
Your request may be sent to the Council by electronic means such as e-mail. Try to provide as much information as
possible to enable the Council to identify and locate the information which you are seeking or requesting. You may
use the form entitled ‘Request for access to information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000’ available from
the Freedom of Information Officer. Your request must be addressed to:
The Freedom of Information Officer
Freedom of Information Unit
Dartford Borough Council
Civic Centre
Home Gardens
Dartford
Kent
DA1 1DR
DX: 142726 DARTFORD 7
Email: foi@dartford.gov.uk
Web-site: http//:www.dartford.gov.uk/
You must provide a name and address for correspondence (an e-mail address will satisfy this requirement).
R
equests from the media for information are dealt with under separate arrangements by contacting the
Communications Team (Tel: 01322 343069: Email: communications@dartford.gov.uk
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13 June 2019
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Note 7.How do I make a request for information if I am suffering from a disability, am ill or illiterate?
If you are unable to put your request in writing perhaps as a result of illiteracy, disability or illness, please ask another
person or agency (such as the Citizens Advice Bureau) to help you or to make the request on your behalf. The
Council will provide you with assistance examples of which may include:
1. accepting an oral request where you are unable to read, print and/or write due to your disability;
2. enabling you to inspect or have the information you are requesting explained to you;
3. providing guidance in other languages [Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Hindi, Punjab, Somali and Urdu];
4. taking a note of your request over the telephone and then sending the note to you for confirmation;
5. providing this leaflet in Braille or audio tape.
Requests for further assistance must be addressed to the Freedom of Information Officer at the address detailed in
Note 6 above.
Note 8. Are there limits to the information I can ask for?
YES. Confidentiality is sometimes necessary to ensure the effectiveness of the Council’s decision-making and to
protect commer
cial interests, information provided in confidence, personal information and other important interests.
For these reasons, some categories of Council information are not covered by the commitment to provide
information. Nevertheless, it is the Council’s aim to ensure that information should be made available unless it is
clearly not in the public interest to do so. All requests for information will be considered on their merits.
Note 9. How do I describe the information I am asking for?
If at all possible, describe the information as fully as you can to enable the Council to identify and locate it. If you are
requesting personal information, please state precisely in whose name the information is held. You will not normally
be given access to the personal information of another person unless you have obtained the written consent of that
person (refer to Note 5 above). Where you provide insufficient information to enable the Council to identify or locate
the information you are asking for or where your request is ambiguous, the Council will as far as practicable provide
you with assistance to enable you to describe more clearly the information you are requesting. The aim of this
assistance will be to clarify the nature of the information sought and not to determine your aims or motivation for
asking for the information. Where information is likely to be refused on cost grounds, the Council will give you an
indication of what information could be provided within the costs ceiling (refer to Note 11 below).
Note 10. What happens if the Council does not hold the information?
The Council may not hold the information you are asking for because the information may have been destroyed in
accordance with the Council’s data retention policies or the information may be held by another public body. In such
cases, you will be told that the Council does not hold the information. Where the Council believes that the
information is held by another public body and that it would be appropriate to transfer your request to that other body,
you will be asked whether you have any objections to the Council making the transfer. The public body will be asked
whether it consents to your application being transferred to it. Your application will only be transferred with your
consent and with the consent of the other public body.
Note 11. Can the Council charge a fee?
YES. Charges will apply in certain circumstances. There will be no charge for the search, retrieval and collation etc
of information where the costs are estimated to be less than £450.00 (the Threshold). The Council may however
charge the full costs of disbursements e.g. photocopying, postage, video, tape, disk, computer runs etc.
There will be a charge for the search, retrieval and collation etc of information where costs are estimated to exceed
the Threshold. A minimum charge of £25.00 per hour will be applied for the time taken to locate, retrieve and collate
etc information for release. In addition to the hourly rate, the Council may charge the full costs of disbursements e.g.
photocopying, postage, video, tape, disk, computer runs etc. If your request falls within this category, you will be
provided with an estimate of the cost of providing the information before the Council starts any work on your behalf.
The Council will suggest ways for you to amend your request so as to reduce or eliminate the amount of the charge.
Fees may be waived or reduced where the information you are seeking would be of particular assistance to your
understanding of an issue of local importance.
Note 12. How do I receive the information I have asked for?
You are entitled to say how you wish the information to be communicated to you. This may be by letter, in the form
of a digest or summary of the information or by inspection of the information at the Council’s Offices on a date and at
a time to be mutually agreed between you and the Council's Freedom of Information Officer.
Note 13. When must the Council respond to my request?
The Council will respond promptly to your request for information and in any event not later than on the 20
th
working
day of the date of receipt of your application. If it is likely to take longer, the Council will let you know.
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Note 14. Can the Council refuse my request for information?
YES. Vexatious and repeated requests and/or applications made with the aim of frustrating the operations of the
Council may be refused. The Council may refuse to accede to a request for information where the Council estimates
that the costs of complying with the request would exceed the costs ceiling set by the Council (refer to Note 11
above). The Council may also refuse to accede to a request for information where the information is considered to
be exempted under FOI (refer to Note 8 above). You will be given an explanation of the reasons for refusing your
request for information.
Note 15. Can I make a request for Environmental Information?
YES. You have rights of aces to a broad range of environmental information such as information on the state of the
environment, (air, water, soil and land), information on genetically modified organisms, information on emissions and
discharges, noise, energy, radiation, waste and other such substances, measures designed to protect the
environment and plans, programmes, cost benefit and other economic analyses which relate to roads, traffic
maintenance, land use planning, development control and buildings and estates
Requests for environmental information and any applicable fees will be dealt with in accordance with guidance issued
by the Information Commissioner and the
code of practice on the discharge of the obligations of public authorities
under EIR .
Note 16. Can I appeal against the Council’s decision to refuse my request for information?
YES. If you are not satisfied with the decision i.e. your request has been refused or where you consider that your
request has not been properly handled and the issue cannot be resolved in discussion with the Freedom of
Information Officer, or where you dispute the fee, or where you did not receive all the information requested, or you
feel that the exemptions have been wrongly applied, or your application was not dealt with within the 20 working day
time limit, you may ask for an ‘internal review’ of the decision under the Council’s Corporate Complaints Procedure.
Your request for an internal review must be submitted within 4 weeks of the date of the decision to:
The Corporate Complaints Officer
Dartford Borough Council
Civic Centre
Home Gardens
Dartford
Kent DA1 1DR
Email: complaints.officer@dartford.gov.uk
Web-site: www.dartford.gov.uk
If you are not satisfied with the decision on ‘internal review’, or where the Council has failed to respond to you within
the time specified in the Corporate Complaints Procedure or within the time agreed between you and the Council you
may apply to the Information Commissioner for an independent review at the following address:
The Information Commissioner
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Tel: 44 (0) 1625 545700
Web-site: www.ico.gov.uk
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Note 17. Who do I contact for further information or assistance on Freedom of Information?
For any further information you may require in relation to your rights of access to Dartford Borough Council
information under FOI or the EIR, please contact the Freedom of Information Officer at the address detailed in Note 6
above or see the Information Commissioner’s website www.ico.gov.uk
Note 18. Can I be held liable for breach of copyright?
Not unless you breach copyright laws. Information may be subject to copyright protection. If you wish to use any
such information in a way that would infringe copyright, for example by making multiple copies, or issuing copies to
the public, you will require a licence from the copyright holder. Disclosure without this licence would be considered
an offence and prosecutable.
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