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Trading Standards

Volume 464: debated on Tuesday 9 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what rights of access trading standards officers have to (a) planning, (b) building control and (c) council tax data held by the departments of local authorities. (153517)

I have been asked to reply.

The rights of trading standards officers to have access to personal data from local authority planning, building and council tax databases are determined by section 29 of the Data Protection Act 1998 and section 115 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998. Section 29 of the Data Protection Act provides that disclosure of personal data may take place where such disclosure is for the purposes of preventing or detecting crime, or apprehending or prosecuting offenders. Section 115 of the Crime and Disorder Act provides that any person who would not otherwise have the power to disclose information to a police authority or a local authority has power to do so where the disclosure is necessary or expedient for the purposes of any provision of that Act.