Section 8 – Power to obtain information
27.This section gives the Regulator power to serve notices requiring the provision of information relating to the quality of water supplied by a public water supplier and the production of documents. The Regulator may serve such a notice on the public water supplier itself, its officers or employees or any other persons believed to be in possession of relevant information or documents. The Regulator cannot require a person to disclose anything that they would not be required to disclose during legal proceedings in the Court of Session (subsection (3)).
28.Subsection (4) gives “document” a broad meaning for the purposes of this section so that it covers any medium in which information is stored; but documents stored otherwise than in legible form must be provided in a legible form. Subsection (5) enables copies to be taken of documents produced under this section.
29.Subsection (6) provides for it to be an offence not to comply, without reasonable excuse, with a requirement in a notice under this section or intentionally to alter, suppress or destroy a document required to be produced. Subsection (7) establishes penalties for those found guilty of the offence. At present the statutory maximum fine for a summary conviction is £5,000 and this is subject to periodic revision. In the case of conviction on indictment, the fine would be an amount without limit which the Court, having regard to the circumstances, considered appropriate.