Fine words – but where Wirral Council’s concerned, they’re always a hostage to fortune

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Here’s a link to a fine Wirral Council document.  ‘Fine’ because its stuffed with nice sounding, positive words – strong, decisive ones.  Only later – much later – to be revealed as shitty, deceitful and hollow.  The abusive council which promised so much… but delivered nothing.

http://democracy.wirral.gov.uk/mgConvert2PDF.aspx?ID=18972

It’s the process of bogus, pained self-flagellation / feigned victimhood that workplace bullies lurch towards when caught in the act.  Like rabbits in the headlights, they’re briefly stunned; but not missing a beat, they quickly recover.  Soon they’re up and running again, promising not to be so awful to their staff again in the future.  Their staff – the people they’ve described so many times in the past as ‘our most important asset’.

“Never again”, they will say. “This time….  it’s for real.”

But because they have all the power, they’ll quickly remind you that they’re the ones who are best placed to sort it all out.  They’ll start by making an earnest pledge to the watching public.

“We will stop at nothing in pursuit of the truth.  Lessons will be learned.  We will make the people responsible for this atrocious conduct (i.e. we the councillors / senior officers and our on-message sycophants) fully accountable…. and we are determined to succeed.  We are committed to fixing this organisation, and  moving forward.  We will start by calling for an immediate and robust review of all the relevant policies and procedures.”

This will be their call to ‘action’.  They may even call the whole thing an “Action Plan“.  Because that sounds positive.  Unless like Wirral, you happen to be on Action Plan number 94 for whatever year, with the list of self-generating scandals and fiascos growing ever longer:

  • (to be continued…..)

The experienced council watchers among you are now seeing phrases trotted out such as ‘we need to draw a line under it’ or ‘this council has to move forward’ or ‘that’s historical and happened such a long time ago’.

Here’s a reminder of Councillor Denise Roberts’ amendment from way back when – otherwise known as ‘the ‘series of unfortunate events defence’ – stuffed to the gills with the corrosive language of avoidance – which despite or because of LGA involvement, still epitomises to this day Wirral Council’s inability to take onboard and recognise its own desperate failings.

As the desire to cover up gathers fresh momentum, a public inquiry and / or special measures are desperately needed – to stem the haemorrhaging of £millions more of our money into the burgeoning black hole of Wirral councillors’ and senior officers’ creation.

Now…!

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UPDATED ~ Wirral Borough Council’s Ex-CEO, Steve Maddox. Controversial early departure

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UPDATE   December 2012

This request appeared on the ICO’s highlights for the year 2012, in the NORTH WEST section:

http://www.ico.gov.uk/news/latest_news/2012/ico-highlights-information-revealed-by-foi-in-your-area-20122012.aspx

18th February 2012

This week, I received an important and favourable Decision Notice from the Information Commissioner – here

13 months ago, in early January 2011, I placed the following request via the excellent WhatDoTheyKnow website:

http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/stephen_maddox_former_chief_exec

This asked for information related to the circumstances in which the former CEO had apparently applied for early voluntary redundancy.  The matter had been presented for discussion at the following special committee meeting on 17th August 2010:

http://democracy.wirral.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=197&MId=3209&Ver=4

Here is the agenda:

http://democracy.wirral.gov.uk/documents/g3209/Public%20reports%20pack,%2017th-Aug-2010%2017.30,%20Employment%20and%20Appointments%20Committee.pdf?T=10

Item 3 was restricted, and if there were any members of the public present, they would have been cleared out of the room.

BUT… The Information Commissioner has now ruled, after 13 months, that the report held here needs to be released by the Council. They were wrong to withhold the information and to place these restrictions on it.

This is the ICO Decision Notice, #FS50406724:

http://www.easyvirtualassistance.co.uk/18 02 12 – ICO Decision notice – Maddox retirement.PDF

The ICO has given the council 35 days from 15th February 2012 to supply me with the report.  Failure to do so may be reported to the High Court and treated as contempt.

Both myself and the council have the option of appealing any aspect of this decision notice to the First Tier Tribunal.

Watch this space for updates.  The report will appear here when I have it.

The report is now in.  Click here:

http://www.easyvirtualassistance.co.uk/Maddox withheld EVR request.pdf

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