Office of the Scottish Information Commissioner opens in St Andrews.

NEWS RELEASE - 29th October 2003

The Scottish Information Commissioner will hold a reception to mark the official opening of his new office on Wednesday 29th October.

The event follows several months of renovations that have seen a former hotel in St Andrews transformed into modern offices.

Each room of the new office has been named after prominent figures in past Scottish public life. The Alexander Room , where the reception will be held, is named after the late Sir Kenneth Alexander, the economist and academic credited with founding the community education service in Scotland . Sir Kenneth's widow, Lady Angela Alexander, will formally open the room during Wednesday's reception.

The event will be also attended by representatives of the Scottish Executive and Fife 's public bodies, along with staff from local firms who worked on the refurbishment. The Commissioner will use the opportunity to personally thank those organisations and firms who have played a crucial role in the establishment of the office.

Kevin Dunion is the first holder of the newly-created post of Scottish Information Commissioner. He is responsible for enforcing Scotland 's Freedom of Information legislation, which provides individuals with a right of access to information held by all of Scotland 's public bodies, including the Scottish parliament, local government and the NHS.

The Commissioner has recruited a team of 13 staff to support him in his role, all of whom are based in St Andrews .

With staff and accommodation now in place, the office will be working hard to ensure that Scotland 's public bodies are ready to comply with the act when it comes into force in January 2005.

The Commissioner said;

"I'm delighted that after lots of hard work the office is now fully up and running. Our official opening will be a great opportunity to thank some of the people who have made this happen, while also allowing us to let local people know who we are and what we are here to do."

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