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Publication - FOI/EIR release

Bypassing of Inverurie A96 between Aberdeen and Inverness: EIR release

Published: 12 Jan 2018

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

Published:
12 Jan 2018
Bypassing of Inverurie A96 between Aberdeen and Inverness: EIR release

FOI reference: FOI/17/02943
Date received: 4 December 2017
Date responded: 22 December 2017

Information requested

1. Any email correspondence from 1 March 2017 to 30 November 2017 between Transport Scotland and a) Humza Yousaf and b) Keith Brown regarding future finishing works on the Queensferry Crossing between the opening of the bridge and September 2018?

2. Any email correspondence from 1 March 2017 to 30 November 2017 between Transport Scotland and a) Humza Yousaf and b) Keith Brown regarding the exact date of opening of the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route?

3. Any email correspondence from 1 January 2016 to 30 November 2017 between Transport Scotland and a) Humza Yousaf and b) Keith Brown regarding the bypassing of Inverurie as part of the planned dualling of the A96 between Aberdeen and Inverness?

Response

1. This information is not held by Transport Scotland. This is a formal notice under section 17(1) of FOISA that Transport Scotland does not have the information you have requested.

2. An exemption under section 33(1)(b) of FOISA (commercial interests) applies to the information requested regarding the opening of the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route /Balmedie to Tipperty (AWPR/B-T) Project. This exemption applies because disclosure of this particular information would, or would be likely to, prejudice substantially the commercial interests of Aberdeen Roads Limited (ARL), the project contractor. Release of this information is likely to prejudice substantially the commercial interests of ARL. Disclosure of this information may also give advantages to competitors in future similar tendering exercises.

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 and transparent government, and to help account for the expenditure of public money. However, there is a greater public interest in protecting the commercial interests of companies which enter into Scottish Government contracts, to ensure that we are always able to obtain the best value for public money. contracts, to ensure that we are always able to obtain the best value for public money.

3 (a). There has been no e-mail correspondence from 1 January 2016 to 30 November 2017 between Transport Scotland and Minister for Transport and the Islands Humza Yousaf.

3 (b). Enclosed for you are the following documents:

  • Ministerial Submission dated 31 August 2016. In respect of procurement arrangements to be put in place to secure consultancy services for the A96 Dualling Eastern Section.

  • Briefing dated 23 February 2017 for Cabinet Secretary for a meeting with Gillian Martin MSP

  • A96 Bennachie Briefing dated 4 May 2017

  • Ministerial Submission dated 21 June 2017 in respect of A96 Dualling Eastern Section Consultancy Tender Award.

  • Ministerial Submission dated 5 October 2017 in respect A96 Dualling East of Huntly to Aberdeen 'Meet the Team' community engagement

Some information within these documents has been redacted as follows:

Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA) S33 (1) (b). This exemption applies because disclosure of this particular information would, or would be likely to, prejudice substantially the commercial interests of the project contractor.

Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA) S38 (1) (b). This exemption applies because this information is personal data relating to a third party.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference

Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG