Thursday, May 26, 2011

Twenty three complaints

Ms Mildmay, from the Sheringham Campaign Against Major Retail Overdevelopment, questioned the effectiveness of the Local Government Ombudsman and said: “The report is complete rubbish, mildly predictable and not correct. The whole thing was very dubious and highly questionable.”

My comment: Join the club. 

Whilst councils are allowed to gain an indirect benefit from a development (Planning gain section 106 agreements, more accurately described as a means through which a council can legalise a bung) there will always be questions over all developments. 

Did a council really want the development or were they more interested in securing the contents of the section 106 agreement? Unfortunately section 106 agreements allow the richer developers, the ones that can offer the biggest section 106 contribution, to get planning permission where others often fail.

Read the full story from the source Norwich Evening News

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Why some people won't go to the LGO

 

You Tube Video obviously posted by someone who doesn't want to use the discredited LGO.

Who can blame them, I for one wouldn't advise anyone to use the LGO

Where is Tony Redmond's replacement?

Tony Redmond, LGO London office and Chair of the Commission for Local Administration for England retired in November 2010.

The Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) knew he was going to retire in 2010 when he was recruited in 2001. So they had plenty of time to recruit a replacement well before he retired. However, for some unknown reason they didn't.

When asked why the hadn't begun recruiting a replacement well before he retired the DCLG stated that the couldn't because of the 2010 general elections. However, the reason given can't be true because Anne Seex was recruited in 2005 and just as in 2010 there was a general election in 2005.

My wife (part time assistant) submitted a second Freedom of Information in an attempt to root out the truth.

"Dear Department for Communities and Local Government, Please provide any and all information held about the recruitment of a replacement for Tony Redmond, Local Government Ombudsman and Chair of the Commission for Local Administration, who retired some 6 months ago. Or in the alternative any and all information held which would explain why he is not going to be replaced."

Whatever information they now supply can't mitigate the fact that they clealry provided misleading information in their response to her first FOI request.

Something I am personally going to pursue. Looks like the DCLG , like the LGO, are another body that doesn't like telling the full story.

"Dear Department for Communities and Local Government, You have previously gone on record stating that the reason you couldn't recruit a replacement Local Government Ombudsman in 2010 was because it was during an election year. However, Anne Seex LGO  was recruited in 2005 which was also during an election year.

Therefore, I would like a copy of any policy/guidance changes between 2005 and 2010 that would explain the anomaly. Or if you prefer a better reason for not recruiting a replacement Local Government Ombudsman during 2010."

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

LGO & CQC: Two failing watchdogs in the same pod.

Dr Heather Wood “The CQC appears anxious not to rock the boat with any significant criticism of the NHS. My sense of the CQC is that it is firmly part of the NHS establishment.”

Trevor Nunn "The LGO appear anxious not to rock the boat with any significant criticism of Local Government. My sense of the LGO is that it is firmly part of the Local Government establishment." Based on the quote above by Dr Heather Wood.

Neither am I alone in thinking the LGO are firmly part of the Local Government establishment and, as so called watchdogs, not fit for purpose.

Saturday, May 07, 2011

The jokes on the LGO

Every year the LGO buries over 18,000 complaints about local councils. Some of these complaints are made by children. As a result the LGO have been attempting, through teachers, to spread their propaganda.

Accordingly a teacher asked her class how many of them thought the Local Government Ombudsman was fair and independent. Not really knowing what a Local Government Ombudsman was, but wanting to be liked by their teacher, all the kids raised their hands except for little Trevor. The teacher asked little Trevor why he had decided to be different. Little Trevor said, 'Because I don't think the Local Government Ombudsman is fair and independent.' The teacher asked, 'Why don't you think the Local Government Ombudsman is fair and independent?' Trevor said, 'Because I'm a Local Government Ombudsman Watcher.' The teacher asked him why he's a Local Government Ombudsman Watcher. Little Trevor answered, 'Well, my Mum's a Ombudsman Watcher and my Dad's a Ombudsman Watcher, so I'm a Ombudsman Watcher.' Annoyed by this answer, the teacher asked, 'If your Mum was a moron and your Dad was an idiot, what would that make you?' Little Trevor thought for a minute and then replied,  'someone who  thinks the Local Government Ombudsman is fair and independent?'