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Publication - FOI / EIR Release

Correspondence between Mark McDonald and the First Minister: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

FOI reference: FOI/17/02766
Date received: 9 November 2017
Date responded: 8 December 2017

Information requested

Please provide all correspondence between Mark McDonald, Minister for Childcare and Early Years, and the First Minister between the start of 2017 and today's date, including emails, text messages and telephone calls.


I have attached to my email the information we hold relating to your request.

Appendix Title Format Size
A Email correspondence 6 Sept 17 PDF 48KB
B Email correspondence 12 Sept 17 PDF 64KB
C Email correspondence 4 Nov 17 PDF 41KB
D Email from First Minister 4 Nov 17 PDF 46KB

An exemption under section 29(1)(a) of FOISA (formulation or development of government policy) applies to some of the information requested because it relates to the development of Scottish Government policy.

This exemption is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption. We recognise that there is a public interest in disclosing information as part of open, transparent and accountable government, and to inform public debate. However, there is a greater public interest in high quality policy and decision-making, and in the properly considered implementation and development of policies and decisions. This means that Ministers and officials need to be able to consider all available options and to debate those rigorously, to fully understand their possible implications. Their candour in doing so will be affected by their assessment of whether the discussions will be disclosed in the near future, when it may undermine or constrain the Government's view on that policy while it is still under discussion and development.

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Please quote the FOI reference

Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House
Regent Road

13 Dec 2017
Correspondence between Mark McDonald and the First Minister: FOI release