Freedom of information response

Management of planning documents

Publication date: 
Friday 26 June 2020
Request: 

Can you please provide me with the following:

  • Can you please provide me all information about the procedures for uploading material on your Council website as part of the planning application process? If any relevant policy or procedure documents, please forward copies.
  • How are such procedures are communicated to Council staff?
  • Is there a written process or standard operating procedure in your department where staff who publish content online must adhere to in relation to redaction and uploading of documents onto a public domain (Council public website)?
    • Who oversees the process?
  • What procedures, policies or protocols do you have in place to ensure special category or sensitive personal data is not published on your website?
  • In relation to planning documents which hold personal information, how do staff know what information should be redacted and identified as public or private?
  • Who holds the administrative function of checking documents before been published online?
  • Is there a documented process that requires the Planner or senior officer to confirm information is ready to be uploaded to your public website?
  • How do you manage requests from members of the public to view planning applications at your offices
    • Do you have a system in place to track requests these requests?
    • How do you manage requests and management of files from Council staff?
  • Do you accept planning applications in paper or electronic form?
Response: 

1. Planning use various IDOX products for both our document management (DMS) and showing documents online (Public Access). The processes around how these are done are owned by IDOX , further information can be found here - https://www.idoxgroup.com/public-sector/local-government/idox-digital-platform/

2. The only council staff the above is relevant to are those within the planning service so nothing is communicated to the wider council staff. But staff within the area will receive training, have access to process / training notes as well as Annual GDPR training.

3. Yes through both IDOX process notes and an operating process guide which are embedded in our training notes, this document takes into consideration GDPR guidance.

  • Strategic Lead – Development Management

4. Every document that’s is published is checked by two specially trained members of staff before being published on website.

5. Through training and process notes

6. Planning support officers and planning officers

7. Yes

8. 

  • Yes. But as all allowed documents are shown on our website this rarely happens
  • Same as above

9. Both

You are free to use any information supplied to you for your own use, including non-commercial research purposes. However, any other type of re-use, for example, by publishing the information or issuing copies to the public will require the permission of the copyright owner.

Where the copyright is owned by Thurrock Council, you must apply to the Council to re-use the information. Please email information.matters@thurrock.gov.uk if you wish to re-use the information you have been supplied. For information where the copyright is owned by another person or organisation, you must apply to the copyright owner to obtain their permission.

Request reference:
FOI 10035