Community Interest Companies – Social Enterprises (CIC SE) and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)‏

Dear Colleague


I have a general question about “spin outs” of directly provided public services from central/local government to Mutuals/CIC/SEs etc. I queried whether the Community Interest Company being created here would be FOI-able and received the reply below (in blue) from “Somerset Skills and Learning (SS&L)” which is in the process of becoming a Community Interest Company.


Just to confirm that I have checked the status of the new company with our legal advisors and they have confirmed that the CIC will not be classed as a public company, and therefore it will not be subject to the FOI act.


I understand that the Cabinet Office Mutual Support programme has been assisting SS&L?


Has the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) issued any information, advice and guidance (notes) to the Cabinet Office (Mutual Support programme) about Social Enterprises and Community Interest Companies (spin outs etc.)?

 Cash 2

As I understand it the prospective CIC will be almost totally funded by the Education Funding Agency and the Skills Funding Agency.



Can you please advise (or seek the ICO’s advice?) whether CICs mainly or totally funded by the public can (should) be added to Schedule 1 (Part IV Maintained schools and other educational institutions and/or part vi Other public bodies and offices: general) of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)?


Best wishes


Nigel Behan

Unite (Somerset CC)


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