Can the Department publish all correspondence between the Department and Professor Jay Belsky (a consultant/advisor to the Government on Sure Start) in 2006 and 2007, including the amount of money paid to Professor Belsky for his services?
All information relating to correspondence between Professor Belsky and the Department is held by the Department. However, under Section 12 of the FOI Act, the Department is not obliged to comply with the request as the estimated cost to carry out the application will exceed the appropriate limit of £600 and we will not be processing your request further.
A new request for information can be made if the category was narrowed and the scope of the enquiry limited. This way, the Department might be able to comply with the request; though this cannot be guaranteed in relation to this request.
The Department does not pay Professor Belsky directly. The Department has a research contract with Birkbeck, University of London for the National Evaluation of Sure Start (NESS). It is through this contract with the university, Professor Belsky is paid for his responsibilities and the Department has no information of how much is paid to Professor Belsky given that Birkbeck is his employer.
The total cost of the NESS contract from the start in 2001 to the end of this financial year, March 2008, is £19,207,814.66.