East Lothian Council

A guide to the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Requesting Information from East Lothian Council

To increase openness and accountability in government and across the public sector, everyone has a legal right of access to information held by a Scottish public authority.

The council receives almost 1,000 FOI requests each year and many of these are of wider public interest. To increase openness and accountability We publish details of Freedom of Information (FOI) requests and responses.

Information about you

Under the Data Protection Act 1998, every individual is entitled to access his or her own personal data. Requests for this type of information must be made in writing to:

Information Governance Officer
Licensing, Administration and Democratic Services
East Lothian Council
John Muir House
Haddington
EH41 3HA 

Email: foi@eastlothian.gov.uk

When writing, please provide as much detail as possible about the information you are looking for. It may be necessary for us to contact you again if the information you provide is not detailed enough.  Proof of identity may also be required before any information is released.

A fee of £10 may be charged for processing these requests. View the Council’s Information Charging Policy.

We are required to comply within 40 calendar days of receiving your request although East Lothian Council will aim to respond as soon as possible.

Due to the often high volumes of data and the costs of printing, copying and posting, data will be released electronically by email wherever possible.  ELC takes its responsibilities under DP very seriously and data released in this way will be encrypted.

The Data Protection Act 1998 is regulated by the Information Commissioner:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

Tel: 0303 123 1113      Fax: 01625 524510      Website: http://www.ico.gov.uk/

Environmental information

Any request that you make for information about environmental matters will be dealt with under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004. Requests for this type of information can be made verbally or in writing (which we would recommend) to:

Information Governance Officer
Licensing, Administration and Democratic Services
East Lothian Council
John Muir House
Haddington
EH41 3HA 
Email: foi@eastlothian.gov.uk

You will be provided with the requested information within 20 working days or, if the request is complicated, 40 working days.

In some instances you may be charged for the information but we will contact you should this be the case. We will always get your consent before doing any work that we would charge you for. View the Council’s Information Charging Policy.

Other information  

All other information requests that can't be answered immediately are dealt with under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.  Requests for this type of information must be made in writing or another permanent format (for example audio or video tape) to:

Information Governance Officer
Licensing, Administration and Democratic Services
East Lothian Council
John Muir House
Haddington
EH41 3HA 
Email: foi@eastlothian.gov.uk

In most cases, you will be provided with the requested information within 20 working days.  In certain circumstances information may be withheld because it is exempt under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002. If East Lothian Council believes that information is exempt we must justify why. Most of the exemptions are subject to a "public interest test". This means that if there is significant public interest in releasing the information then it will have to be released.

In some instances you may be charged for the information but we will contact you should this be the case. We will always get your consent before doing any work that we would charge you for. View the Council’s Information Charging Policy.

Publication Scheme

Under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002, East Lothian Council must adopt and maintain a publication scheme. The publication scheme describes the information that we publish, in what form it is published, and details of any charges for providing the information. You may wish to view the publication scheme prior to submitting your information request.

The Scottish Information Commissioner

The Scottish Information Commissioner is responsible for enforcing and promoting Scotland's freedom of information laws: the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 and the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

The Scottish Information Commissioner has the authority to override a public authority decision to withhold information and can obtain a court order to demand the release of relevant information.

Where can I get help to make a request?

If you need help making any type of information request, please contact us and we will do our best to advise you:

Information Governance Officer
Licensing, Administration and Democratic Services
East Lothian Council
John Muir House
Haddington
EH41 3HA 
Tel: 01620 827623      Fax: 01620 827253      Email: foi@eastlothian.gov.uk
Regional Office:
Information Commissioner's Office - Scotland
45 Melville St
Edinburgh
EH3 7JL
Tel:  0131 244 9001      Email: scotland@ico.gsi.gov.uk

Law and Licensing, Corporate Resources, John Muir House, Haddington, EH41 3HA.

Telephone: 01620 827623

Fax: 01620 827438

Search our database of Freedom of Information (FOI) requests and responses

East Lothian Council, John Muir House Brewery Park Haddington East Lothian EH41 3HA.