Over the last few months in the CPALC (Communities, Parish and Local Councils) forum there have been clear examples of councils where chairmen, councillors and clerks seem to have lost the plot such as...
- Standing Orders being suspended to allow chairmen to continue in post after their time in post as regulated by Standing Orders has ended.
- Parish council meetings being held without the statutory 3 clear days notice
- Councillors being excluded from seeing monthly accounts
- Chairmen excluding residents from meetings without reason or process
- Chairman handling Freedom of Information Act (FOI) requests
- Calls from councillors for meetings to be closed to the public and press for matters that should be debated in public
- Excluding the public from the Annual Parish Meeting i.e. the meeting specifically for the public and community groups
- Residents attending council meetings treated with utter disrespect
- Clerks and chairman refusing to put items on the agenda
- Spending being approved without being on an agenda
- Staff being employed without contracts
- Councillors being bullied because they ask difficult questions or challenge how their council conducts business
- Councillor resignations due to petty playground antics uncontrolled by the chairman
- Chairman using the clerk for essentially private non council meetings
- The total failure of the new code of conduct and lack of an ombudsman
These are just a few recent examples and we believe represent the tip of the iceberg.
The CPALC forms are for support and discussion, they are free and open to all.