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Council reports significant progress in Freedom of Information requests

Liverpool City Council has been commended by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for work improving responses to Freedom of Information requests.

Concerns about the Council’s performance led to the issuing of what is known as a ‘Practice Recommendation’ last year.

Since then, significant progress has been made, including:

  • Clearing the historic backlog of cases, which at the end of July 2023 stood at 103 cases.
  • Bringing in additional resources to deliver and maintain improvements.
  • Achieving a response rate of 88% within the statutory period of 20 working days, up from 53% when the Practice Recommendation was issued.
  • Undertaking a Peer Review with the London Borough of Camden to ensure longer term improvements are identified, supported by a transformation plan to deliver and maintain improvements.
  • Providing shorter and more effective responses to requests.

The ICO has agreed to remove the Practice Recommendation if the Council achieves a response rate of 90% and makes information access request statistics easily accessible on the website by the end of February.

Deputy Council Leader and Cabinet Member responsible for Law and Governance, Councillor Ruth Bennett, said: “We are absolutely committed to being as open and transparent as we can and a great deal of hard work has gone into improving our response to Freedom of Information requests over the last six months.

“Improving our systems and processes so that we provide timely and appropriate responses is a key part of our improvement journey. We are committed to ensuring the improvements are sustained in the longer term, providing an effective and efficient service.”

A report summarising the progress will be considered by the Audit Committee on Tuesday 23 January and can be read at

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