“Behaviours” Part 2

The first instalment describing the behaviour of council officers was posted here. This is all material that I provided to the Commissioner for Ethical Standards during the failed complaint by the then 4 most senior council officers. My view was, and remains, that this was a deliberate attempt to shut me up. They hated (and still hate) this blog.

Part 2 of “Behaviours”, the word used pejoratively by Mr Cleland Sneddon about me went out to councillors and the press today, as follows. The preamble to this is the same one as in the first part at this link.

Example 2

I have already stated  that in August 2012, I gave a list of 38 questions to Mrs Loudon relating to what had been happening in Castle Toward, an education property in my ward. The (then) chief executive has consistently refused to reply to any of the questions in that list. The question is why.

Here is an extract from what I gave to Mrs Loudon, raising serious issues about the behaviour of one of the council’s legal staff, a member of staff described later by Mr Hendry as being a “good officer”.  The lack of any reply by Mrs Loudon is most telling. Had she thought for a second that I was out of order for what I had written, surely she would have had something to say about this? Instead, she appears to dodge the issue completely. AR is Actual Reality.

BLANK’s email of 8 August has provoked me to write this. In the last few days, I have rarely seen behaviour of the kind displayed by BLANK. His ability to leave key information out of what he says amounts to an attempt to mislead.

If he is being aided to do this by others then it makes them as culpable as he is. The question is who are these others? There seems to be spin everywhere in what he says and that combined with what to me appears to be an extreme negativity towards AR has produced a situation that is shameful, and I will not be part of that.

The following extract was also in the same list of questions from August 2012. Actual Reality were occupiers of Castle Toward at that point and the paper referred to relates to an attempt by AR to  buy another council property, Ardentinny. The draft paper referred to was written under the direction of, if not by, Mr Hendry. BLANK in the first example will almost certainly have been a co-author. As a new councillor, I was utterly astounded by what I saw as clear and deliberate attempts by officers to mislead elected members.

Why does the draft paper omit any mention of what the AR draft offer describes as “overage provision”, which would provide additional funds to the council in the event AR sold off the 2 houses on the Ardentinny site, the value of which is why AR disagrees with the DV’s valuation. This overage provision seems to me to be material to the AR offer so is this omission not misleading the council?

There will be more to follow on other “behaviours”, some of which are far worse than what’s been told to date.

End of today’s email.

The point of the above is that officers appear to routinely mislead councillors, as certainly happened in this case. Audit Scotland knows all about this but did nothing. It seems that anything goes in Argyll & Bute and that Audit Scotland is too weak and disinterested to act.

 

 

 

Author: Michael Breslin

I am no longer a councillor with Argyll & Bute Council but given the appalling treatment I got from the senior officers and a few elected members, I plan to continue keeping an eye on what the council is doing.

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