Freedom of information request response - 05551
I request that you provide information regarding the sale of the open voting register for commercial or marketing purposes. I would like to know the following:
- How many number of copies and entries of the open voting register has the council sold?
- How much income has the council generated?
- Which companies and individuals that have purchased data and at what cost?
- What is the total number of companies and/or individuals that have purchased data?
Please could I get this data broken down by:
- Annually since 2015
- Data format and printed format
Thank you for your request which has been logged under FOI Ref No 05551. However, please note that we will not be treating this as a request for information under the Freedom of Information Act, as the Electoral Registration Officer’s role falls outside of the legislation.
The Registration of Electors is governed by the Representation of the People Act 1983 as amended. Under Section 8 of the Act, a council must appoint one of its officers to be the Registration Officer for any constituency or part of a constituency coterminous with or situated within the council's area. Any appointment as Electoral Registration Officer is separate to any other appointment and although appointed by the council, the Electoral Registration Officer's responsibilities and duties are personal. An example of this is that the Register of Electors is deemed to be the property of the Electoral Registration Officer, not the local authority. The Electoral Registration Officer does not carry out the duties on behalf of the local authority but in his own personal capacity.
The Freedom of Information Act does not list any person appointed under the Representation of the People Act 1983. It follows that the Electoral Registration Officer, Returning Officer or any other person appointed under the Act are not subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act.