Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Scottish Information Commissioner publishes annual report

Press release: 9 March 2008
The Commissioner's Annual Report for 2008 reviews the performance of his office during 2008 and sets out the strategic direction for his second and final term of office. Since 2005, Mr Dunion has dealt with nearly 2,000 applications which have required over 750 formal decisions. At the end of 2008, the average age of cases closed during the year was 6.7 months, compared with 10 months a year earlier. Only 10% of cases were over 12 months old at the end of 2008, compared to 29% at the end of 2006.

Looking forward, the Commissioner's two main priorities are to ensure public authorities get compliance right first time, and to continue to press for safeguards to the public's right to information. During 2009, 10 public authorities will be audited for compliance with the Act, and the Commissioner will continue to pursue dialogue with the Scottish Government on designating a list of new bodies under the Act.
The Commissioner also called on Scottish public sector leaders to push the boundaries of openness:
Launching his Fifth Annual Report today, Scottish Information Commissioner Kevin Dunion applauded the intention of Scotland's Chief Constables to proactively publish their expenses, at a time when the subject of trust in government and public officials is rarely out of the news.

The majority of Scotland's police forces have already signed up to a 'model publication scheme' which includes detailed expenses for Chief Constables and Assistant Chief Constables. The new schemes will go live in June 2009.

Kevin Dunion believes there is a real need for public trust to be restored, and he calls for a new model of leadership in Scotland, where all our public leaders expect to be held to account.

Annual Report 2008 (1.5Mb)
Annual Report 2008 - Key Facts (103k)
Link to case studies

English reverting to archaic FOI policies, claims Dunion - Sunday Herald, 10 March 2009

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