Council Too Slow to Respond to FOI Requests

H&F asked to sign undertaking to improve performance

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Information Commissioner's Office

Hammersmith and Fulham Council

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Hammersmith and Fulham has been criticised by the Information Commisioner's Office for continuing to be too slow to respond to Freedom of Information requests.

The ICO says it monitored 33 organisations over a three month period following concerns about delays in their responses to FOI requests.

Out of the 33, the ICO says that the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, the London Borough of Islington, Wolverhampton City Council and Westminster City Council have been asked to sign undertakings to improve their performance.

Information Commissioner Christopher Graham says: "Responding promptly to FOI requests is key to delivering citizens' rights. Too many public authorities are taking too long to decide either whether to release information or to refuse requests."

The commissioner also had concerns about the Cabinet Office, the MdD and Birmingham City Council. The remaining 26 authorities have maintained or improved their response times sufficiently, and no action is being taken against them.

"I am delighted that over two-thirds of the authorities whose performance we have been monitoring have managed to overcome their problems," said the Commisioner.

" However, the remaining authorities have not done enough to convince us that they have a clear and credible plan for getting back on track. Over the next four weeks, we shall be discussing appropriate next steps with them."

April 14, 2011