Scottish Information Commissioner welcomes publication of Deloitte investigation reports

Statement from the Office of the Scottish Information Commissioner about this issue. For more information see our web page about the reports and our statement.

Rosemary Agnew, the Scottish Information Commissioner, welcomes today’s publication of the Project Power and Project Solar reports by the City of Edinburgh Council.  The Commissioner has been advising the City of Edinburgh Council during its preparation of the reports for publication. 

The two investigation reports were prepared by Deloitte LLP, into allegations of impropriety in the award of contracts for building work at City of Edinburgh Council.  

There has been an extremely high level of interest in this information.  The Commissioner has received more than 50 appeals in relation to statutory repair notices in Edinburgh.

In recognition of these exceptional circumstances, the Commissioner took the unusual step of providing direct support to the Council with a view to helping them make as much of the two reports proactively available as possible.  The Commissioner notes that some of the information published today could be withheld under FOI law, but the Council has decided to publish it. This means that more information will be available to more people now, but does not prevent or prejudice future requests for information about the reports. 

Rosemary Agnew said: 

“This is a positive but unusual example of where we can add value.  We made available our expertise where it could most help the public by helping an authority in a particularly sensitive and unusual situation.  We’ve provided constructive challenge and advice to the Council to help it put as much information as it feels it possibly can into the public domain in a response to public concerns about a specific area of its operations. 

“I need to stress that the final decision about what to publish has been the Council’s. We have been careful throughout to ensure that our involvement would not prejudice future appeals to my office. I have also stressed to the Council the importance of keeping these documents under review as the sensitivity of some of the redacted information may decline over time.”

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