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Session 1999-2000
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Amendments to the Freedom of Information Bill

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

Here you can browse the Amendments to the Freedom of Information Bill to be moved on Report in the House of Lords.

  
Clause 2
 
  
BY THE LORD McNALLY
THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
 
     Page 2, line 12, leave out subsection (1) and insert--
 
    ("(1)  Where any provision of Part II states that the duty to confirm or deny does not arise in relation to any information, the effect of the provision is that where either--
    (a)  the provision confers absolute exemption, or
    (b)  in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exclusion of the duty to confirm or deny outweighs the public interest in disclosing whether the public authority holds the information,
section 1(1)(a) does not apply.")
 
     Page 2, line 21, leave out from ("apply") to end of line 27 and insert ("if or to the extent that--
    (a)  the information is exempt information by virtue of a provision conferring absolute exemption, or
    (b)  in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.")
 
  
BY THE LORD LUCAS
 
     Page 2, line 27, at end insert--
 
    ("(2A)  In assessing the public interest in disclosing the information under subsection (2)(b) above, particular weight shall be given to the desirability of making factual information freely available to the public.")
 
  
Schedule 1
 
  
BY THE LORD FALCONER OF THOROTON
 
     Page 47, line 5, leave out paragraph 19 
     Page 52, line 16, at end insert--
    ("The Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service.")
 
     Page 53, line 33, at end insert--
    ("English Nature.")
 
     Page 54, line 30, at end insert--
    ("The House of Lords Appointments Commission.")
 
     Page 55, line 10, at end insert--
    ("A local probation board established under section 4 of the Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000.")
 
     Page 55, leave out line 47 
     Page 58, line 47, at end insert--
    ("The consultative Civic Forum referred to in section 56(4) of the Northern Ireland Act 1998.")
 
  
Clause 7
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
THE VISCOUNT ASTOR
 
     Page 5, line 10, leave out paragraph (a) 
  
BY THE LORD FALCONER OF THOROTON
 
     Page 5, line 40, at end insert--
    ("(  )  In this section "publicly-owned company" has the meaning given by section 6.")
 
  
Clause 9
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
THE VISCOUNT ASTOR
 
     Page 6, line 19, leave out ("may") insert ("shall") 
     Page 6, line 20, leave out paragraph (a) and insert--
    ("(a)  that a fee may only be charged in prescribed cases and otherwise no fee is to be payable,")
 
     Page 6, line 24, at end insert--
 
    ("(  )  Regulations under subsection (3) shall provide that fees are set at a sufficiently low level in order to facilitate access by the public to information held by public authorities.")
 
  
Clause 10
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
THE VISCOUNT ASTOR
 
     Page 6, line 28, leave out ("subsections (2) and (3)") and insert ("subsection (2)") 
     Page 6, line 37, leave out subsection (3) 
  
BY THE LORD McNALLY
THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
 
     Page 6, line 38, leave out paragraphs (a) and (b) and insert--
    ("(a)  section 1(1)(a) would not apply if the condition in section 2(1)(b) were satisfied, or
    (b)  section 1(1)(b) would not apply if the condition in section 2(2)(b) were satisfied,")
 
  
Clause 12
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
THE VISCOUNT ASTOR
 
     Page 7, line 42, at beginning insert ("Unless it is in the public interest to do so,") 
  
After Clause 15
 
  
BY THE LORD McNALLY
THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
 
     Insert the following new Clause-- 
     (" .--(1) It shall be the duty of a public authority to provide advice and assistance, so far as it would be reasonable to expect the authority to do so, to persons who propose to make, or have made, requests for information to it.
 
    (2)  Any public authority which in relation to the provision of advice or assistance in any case conforms with the code of practice under section 44 is to be taken to comply with the duty imposed by subsection (1) in relation to that case.")
Duty to provide advice and assistance.
  
Clause 16
 
  
BY THE LORD McNALLY
THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
 
     Page 10, line 3, leave out from ("that") to second ("or") in line 4 and insert ("any provision of Part II relating to the duty to confirm or deny is relevant to the request") 
     Page 10, leave out lines 14 to 17 and insert--
          ("(i)  that any provision of Part II which relates to the duty to confirm or deny and is not specified in section 2(3) is relevant to the request, or
          (ii)  that the information is exempt information only by virtue of a provision not specified in section 2(3), and")
 
     Page 10, line 24, at end insert ("and must contain an estimate of the date by which the authority expects that such a decision will have been reached") 
     Page 10, line 27, leave out ("does not apply") and insert ("applies") 
  
Clause 22
 
  
BY THE LORD FALCONER OF THOROTON
 
     Page 14, line 1, at end insert--
    ("(  )  the Tribunal established under section 65 of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000,")
 
  
Clause 26
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
THE VISCOUNT ASTOR
 
     Page 15, line 20, at beginning insert ("Except in respect of information provided to a public authority by the European Union, its member states, institutions, organisations, or related bodies,") 
  
Clause 29
 
  
BY THE LORD ARCHER OF SANDWELL
 
     Page 16, line 34, at end insert ("and its disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice any such investigation or proceedings.
 
    (  )  For the purpose of subsection (1), in considering whether a disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice any investigation or proceedings, a public authority shall in particular have regard to whether the disclosure would be likely to deter any witness from making a statement or giving evidence in connection with any such investigation or proceedings.")
 
  
Clause 34
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
THE VISCOUNT ASTOR
 
     Page 20, line 21, leave out ("it relates to") and insert ("its disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice") 
     Page 20, line 24, leave out paragraph (c) 
     Page 20, line 26, at end insert--
 
    ("(  )  Information held by a government department is exempt information if it relates to the provision of advice by any of the Law Officers or any request for the provision of such advice.")
 
  
BY THE LORD McNALLY
THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
 
     Page 20, line 36, at end insert--
 
    ("(  )  In making any determination required by section 2(1)(b) or (2)(b) in relation to information which is exempt information by virtue of subsection (1)(a), regard shall be had to the particular public interest in the disclosure of factual information which has been used, or is intended to be used, to provide an informed background to decision-taking.")
 
  
Clause 35
 
  
BY THE LORD ARCHER OF SANDWELL
 
     Page 21, line 25, leave out (", in the reasonable opinion of a qualified person,") 
     Page 21, line 39, leave out paragraph (c) 
     Page 21, line 43, leave out (", in the reasonable opinion of a qualified person,") 
     Page 22, line 1, leave out subsections (4) to (7) 
  
Clause 39
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
THE VISCOUNT ASTOR
 
     Page 24, line 21, at end insert--
 
    ((  )  Where information is exempt only by virtue of the fact that it is--
    (a)  information to which subsection (2) applies by virtue of the fact that the first condition referred to in that subsection is satisfied; and
    (b)  that condition would not be satisfied if the data subject consents to the disclosure,
the authority shall, if it is reasonable in all the circumstances to do so, take reasonable steps to enquire whether the data subject consents to the disclosure.")
 
  
Clause 42
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
THE VISCOUNT ASTOR
 
     Page 25, line 21, after ("it)") 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).") 
  
Clause 52
 
  
BY THE LORD MACKAY OF ARDBRECKNISH
THE VISCOUNT ASTOR
 
     Page 31, line 3, at end insert (", and
    (b)  compliance with the decision notice or enforcement notice would result in serious harm to the public interest.")
 
     Page 31, line 3, at end insert--
 
    ("(2A)  Where the accountable person gives a certificate to the Commissioner under subsection (2) he shall on the same day lay a copy of that certificate before each House of Parliament; and such a certificate shall cease to have effect unless, it is approved by a resolution of each House of Parliament within the period of 20 days beginning with the date on which it is laid.
 
    (2B)  The period referred to in subsection (2A) shall be computed, in relation to each House of Parliament, by reference only to days on what that House sits.")
 
  
Clause 65
 
  
BY THE LORD McNALLY
THE LORD GOODHART
THE LORD LESTER OF HERNE HILL
 
     Page 34, line 43, leave out from ("II") to second ("or") and insert ("relating to the duty to confirm or deny") 
     Page 35, line 3, leave out from ("Where") to end of line 4 and insert ("information to which this section applies falls within a provision of Part II relating to the duty to confirm or deny but does not fall within any of the provisions of that Part relating to that duty which are") 
     Page 35, line 14, leave out ("does not apply") and insert ("applies") 
  
Clause 81
 
  
BY THE LORD FALCONER OF THOROTON
 
     Page 42, line 17, leave out ("or 52(6) or (7)") 
 
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Prepared 10 November 2000