Opera House funding (FOI)
Opera House funding (FOI)Produced by the Freedom of Information office
Authored by Government of Jersey and published on 15 January 2021.
Prepared internally, no external costs.
In April 2020 Jersey Opera House closed due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Later it was announced by the board that it would not reopen until certain essential and safety related building work had been undertaken. It was also stated that the Government of Jersey would be asked to pay for this.
My questions are:
How much money has been requested from the Government for this work?
Has all or any of the money been granted?
If so, how much have the Opera House received and when?
If not, are there any current plans for the request to be processed by the States or has it been rejected?
Are the States legally obliged to maintain the Opera House building?
Is there any projected date for the building work to be completed to a standard that would permit the reopening of the Opera House?
An Expression of Interest submission has been made to the Fiscal Stimulus Fund for works to the Jersey Opera House. At this time, the value contained within the Expression of Interest submission is exempt under Article 33(b) (Commercial Interests) of the Freedom of Information (Jersey) Law 2011, to avoid any commercial disadvantage in advance of any tender process.
Details of the Government Fiscal Stimulus Fund can be found in the following link:
Fiscal Stimulus Fund
No money has been granted to date.
A decision is currently awaited subsequent to the expression of Interest submission made to the Fiscal Stimulus Fund.
The Government of Jersey has an obligation to keep and maintain the Demised Premises in a wind and watertight condition and to conduct certain repairs to the premises.
The Opera House is currently closed due to operating constraints imposed under the Covid-19 response. If the Jersey Opera House bid to the Fiscal Stimulus Fund is successful for the first tranche of funding, and the level of funding requested is agreed, notification will be received at the beginning of March 2021. Under the Fiscal Stimulus Fund Terms of Reference, works would need to be completed by the end of 2021. Subject to the normal procurement process, and in recognition that Jersey Opera House Limited will want to open as soon as possible, subject to Government guidelines on Covid-19, the scheme of works will take this into consideration if funding is approved.
Article 33 Commercial interests
Information is qualified exempt information if –
(a) it constitutes a trade secret; or
(b) its disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice the commercial interests of a person (including the scheduled public authority holding the information).
Public interest test
Since the exemption engaged is qualified, not absolute, a public interest test has been conducted to assess whether, in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in supplying the information is outweighed by the public interest in not doing so. It is judged that the public interest in raising awareness of specific financial information is outweighed by the potential prejudice to the commercial interests of both the States of Jersey and to third parties.