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Commercial and third sector licenses

Request for information – FOI13388

Thank you for your e-mail and later clarification of 1 July 2013, requesting the following information from Ordnance Survey under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) 2000:

Please could you provide the number of commercial and third sector licences issued for the OS MasterMap® Topography layer covering the entirety of Great Britain. Please could this data be provided for each year since the product’s release and under the various discount bands listed in the OS Business portfolio price list 2013–14.

I define third sector as registered charities.

This information is held by Ordnance Survey, but, is exempt from disclosure under Section 12 (1) of the FOIA. Section 12 of the FOIA provides an exemption from our obligation to comply with a request, where the cost of compliance is estimated to exceed the appropriate limit.

The appropriate limit as detailed in the fees regulations is set at £600 for Ordnance Survey. We can take into account the costs attributed to the time persons are expected to spend: determining if the information is held, locating the information, retrieving the information and extracting the information, at £25 per hour per person (regardless of actual cost or rate of pay) which means the limit will be exceeded if these activities exceed 24 hours.

There is no business requirement for Ordnance Survey to hold the information you have requested in a format which is readily accessible, although, it would be possible to extract this information from our storage database and support systems dating back to 1 November 2011, when OS MasterMap Topography Layer was released.

Our Information Systems (IS) department has estimated the time it would take to deliver the information you have requested. They estimate it would require two days' development from an information systems developer to create a report and then a minimum of five days to run the report which would extract the information from our systems.

We would then need to undertake a review of the information, in its entirety, to determine if further work would be required to successfully identify and differentiate third sector licencing.

As seven days’ work significantly exceeds the cost limit, prior to the additional work which may be required around third sector licensing, we will not be providing this information under Section 12 (1) of the FOIA, as it would substantially exceed the cost limit to do so.

Advice and assistance
In cases where the cost limit is exceeded, Ordnance Survey would normally provide advice and assistance to help reduce the scoop of your request to bring it within the cost limits.

However, due to the nature of your request, any information dating back to the launch of OS MasterMap Topography layer in 2011 is likely to exceed the cost limit because of the report creation and running that is required to extract this information from historic storage database and support systems.

Internal review
Your enquiry has been processed according to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) 2000. If you are unhappy with our response, you may request an internal review with our FOI Internal Review Officer, by contacting them as follows:

FOI Internal Review Officer
Customer Service Centre
Ordnance Survey
Adanac Drive
SO16 0AS

E-mail: foi@ordnancesurvey.co.uk

Please include the reference number above. You may request an internal review where you believe Ordnance Survey has:

  • Failed to respond to your request within the time limits (normally 20 working days)
  • Failed to tell you whether or not we hold the information
  • Failed to provide the information you have requested
  • Failed to explain the reasons for refusing a request
  • Failed to correctly apply an exemption or exception

The FOI Internal Review Officer will not have been involved in the original decision. They will conduct an independent internal review and will inform you of the outcome of the review normally within 20 working days, but exceptionally within 40 working days, in line with the Information Commissioner’s guidance.

The FOI Internal Review Officer will either: uphold the original decision, provide an additional explanation of the exemption/s applied or release further information, if it is considered appropriate to do so.

Appeal to Information Commissioner's Office (ICO)
If, following the outcome of the internal review you remain unhappy with our response, you may raise an appeal with the Information Commissioner’s Office at:

The Case Reception Unit
Customer Service Team
The Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

You may e-mail the ICO at mail@ico.gsi.gov.uk or contact them on their telephone helpline: 0303 123 1113 or 01625 545745 for advice, Monday to Friday.

Thank you for your enquiry.

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