Freedom of Information Bill -
Amendments to be debated in the House of Lords
- continued
House of Lords

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Clause 40
 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
213     Page 23, line 4, leave out subsection (2) 
  
Clause 41
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
214     Page 23, line 8, at end insert ("and there is no overriding public interest in complying with the request for information") 
215     Page 23, line 8, at end insert--
 
    ("(  )  In subsection (1), "trade secret" means any confidential trade information which if disclosed to a competitor would cause harm to its owner.")
 
  
BY THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
 
216     Page 23, line 10, after ("to,") insert ("substantially") 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
217     Page 23, line 10, after ("prejudice") insert ("to an unreasonable degree") 
  
BY THE LORD ARCHER OF SANDWELL
THE BARONESS THORNTON
 
218     Page 23, line 11, at end insert ("and if the public interest does not require its disclosure") 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
219     Page 23, line 11, at end insert ("except that, where the public interest in complying with the request for information exceeds the harm to the public interest that would arise from the authority releasing it, the information is not exempt)") 
  
BY THE LORD YOUNG OF DARTINGTON
 
220     Page 23, line 11, at end insert--
 
    ("(  )  Information is not exempt by virtue of subsection (2) if or to the extent that--
    (a)  it relates to the quality or safety of the goods or services produced or supplied by the person referred to in that subsection or the conditions under which those goods or services are produced or supplied; and
    (b)  the prejudice to that person's commercial interests would result from the exercise of more informed choice by persons seeking to acquire those goods or services.")
 
  
BY THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
 
221     Page 23, line 11, at end insert--
 
    ("(  )  In making any decision under section 13 in relation to information which is or may be exempt under this section a public authority shall in particular have regard to the public interest in ensuring that--
    (a)  the expenditure of public funds is subject to effective oversight;
    (b)  the public is kept adequately informed about any risks to public health or safety or to the environment;
    (c)  any statutory authority with regulatory responsibilities relating to those interests is discharging those responsibilities effectively.")
 
  
After Clause 41
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
222     Insert the following new Clause-- 
     ("  .  Information is exempt information if it was supplied to a public authority by a company or other commercial organisation before the coming into force of this Act.")Information supplied by commercial organisations before commencement of Act.
  
Clause 42
 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
223     Page 23, line 17, leave out paragraph (a) 
224     Page 23, line 18, leave out paragraph (b) 
225     Page 23, line 19, leave out paragraph (c) 
  
Clause 43
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
226     Page 23, line 28, leave out ("effects adverse") and insert ("substantial prejudice") 
227     Page 23, line 30, after ("it") insert ("reasonably") 
228     Page 23, line 32, at end insert ("substantially") 
229     Page 24, line 6, leave out subsection (5) 
  
BY THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
THE LORD FALCONER OF THOROTON
 
     The above-named Lords give notice of their intention to oppose the Question that Clause 43 stand part of the Bill. 
  
After Clause 43
 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
230     Insert the following new Clause-- 
     ("  .--(1)  Information is only exempt information for the purposes of sections 25(2), 25(3), 39, 40 and 41 if the public authority is in possession of a written request from the originator of the information that it should be held confidential.
 
    (2)  The public authority shall consider whether, in all the circumstances of the case, the originator of the information referred to in subsection (1) should be asked for permission to release the information.")
Confidentiality of information.
231     Insert the following new Clause-- 
     ("  .  Records of ministerial engagements can never be exempt information under sections 19, 20, 26, 27, 33, 34, 38 or 39.")Records of ministerial engagements.
231A     Insert the following new Clause-- 
     ("  .--(1)  The name and address of anyone corresponding with a public authority, and the date of such correspondence and of any reply from the public authority, can never be exempt information under sections 19, 20, 26, 27, 33, 34, 38 or 39.
 
    (2)  In this section "name and address" means the information necessary to direct a reply to a person by the means of communication adopted by them.")
Correspondence with public authority.
  
Clause 44
 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
232     Page 24, line 36, after ("information,") insert--
    ("(  )  the occasions on which it is acceptable for public authorities to receive information on a confidential basis, and the basis on which that confidentiality shall be accepted and maintained,")
 
233     Page 24, line 38, at end insert--
 
    ("(  )  The code may include provisions as to how public authorities shall reach decisions under particular sections or subsections of any part of this Act.")
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
THE VISCOUNT ASTOR
 
234     Page 24, line 41, at end insert ("and any other relevant person as he or the Commissioner thinks fit") 
  
Clause 45
 
  
BY THE LORD FALCONER OF THOROTON
 
235     Page 25, leave out lines 25 and 26 and insert--
    ("(c)  in relation to Northern Ireland, the appropriate Northern Ireland Minister.")
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
THE VISCOUNT ASTOR
 
236     Page 25, line 26, at end insert (", and
    (d)  any other relevant person")
 
  
Clause 46
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
237     Page 25, line 35, at beginning insert--
 
    ("(A1) The purpose of the Commissioner is to facilitate public access to the information held by public authorities except where disclosure of specific information is exempt under the Act.")
 
238     Page 25, line 35, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
239     Page 25, line 39, after ("requirements") insert ("and spirit") 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
240     Page 25, line 41, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
241     Page 26, line 3, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
242     Page 26, line 3, leave out (", with the consent of any public authority,") 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
243     Page 26, line 5, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
244     Page 26, line 7, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
245     Page 26, line 8, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
246     Page 26, line 11, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
247     Page 26, line 16, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
248     Page 26, line 22, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
  
Clause 47
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
249     Page 26, line 25, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
250     Page 26, line 28, leave out ("give to the authority a recommendation (in this section referred to as a "practice recommendation")") and insert ("instruct the authority (in this section referred to as a "practice instruction")") 
251     Page 26, line 33, leave out ("Commissioner's") and insert ("Ombudsman's") 
252     Page 26, line 37, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
253     Page 26, line 43, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
254     Page 26, line 44, at end insert--
 
    ("(  )  A practice recommendation shall never be exempt information under Part II of this Act.")
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
255     Page 26, line 44, at end insert--
 
    ("(  ) The public authority receiving a practice instruction from the Commissioner shall comply with the terms of the practice instruction within 90 days.")
 
  
Clause 48
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
256     Page 26, line 45, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
257     Page 27, line 1, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
258     Page 27, line 2, leave out ("with respect to those functions") 
  
Before Clause 49
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
259     Insert the following new Clause-- 
     ("  .  The applicant may appeal to the Commissioner where a public body refuses to comply with a request for information under this Act and the Commissioner shall determine whether it is in the public interest to comply or not, and shall direct the public authority to comply where he finds that, on balance, it is in the public interest to disclose.")Application for decision by Commissioner: public interest.
  
Clause 49
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
260     Page 27, line 6, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
261     Page 27, line 8, at end insert ("and of any relevant codes of practice") 
262     Page 27, line 8, at end insert ("or Part VI") 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
263     Page 27, line 8, at end insert (", or
    (b)  whether representations made by the complainant in accordance with section (Third party commercial interests: request for information) have been dealt with in accordance with the requirements of that section")
 
  
BY THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
 
264     Page 27, line 8, at end insert ("or
    (  )  whether a public authority has incorrectly exercised its discretion under section 13(3) in refusing to inform an applicant whether it holds information, or under section 13(4) in refusing to communicate information to an applicant.
    (1A)  For the purpose of this Part a public authority shall be treated as having incorrectly exercised its discretion under section 13(3) or (4) if the Commissioner decides that he would have exercised that discretion differently, and in such a case the Commissioner shall substitute his own discretion for that of the public authority.")
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
 
265     Page 27, line 9, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
266     Page 27, line 17, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
267     Page 27, line 24, leave out ("Commissioner") and insert ("Ombudsman") 
  
BY THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
 
268     Page 27, line 26, after ("1(1),") insert--
    ("(  )  has incorrectly exercised a discretion under section 13,")
 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
269     Page 27, line 27, after ("10,") insert ("11,") 
  
BY THE LORD FALCONER OF THOROTON
 
270     Page 27, line 27, leave out (", 13") 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
271     Page 27, line 33, at end insert--
 
    ("(  )  A decision notice should be issued promptly, and in any event should not, without good cause, be issued later than the twentieth working day following the date of receipt of the application.")
 
  
BY THE LORD FALCONER OF THOROTON
 
272     Page 27, line 40, leave out subsection (7) 
  
BY THE LORD ARCHER OF SANDWELL
THE BARONESS THORNTON
THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
 
273     Page 27, line 40, leave out subsections (7) and (8) 
 
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