Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Council meeting

What an extraordinary Council meeting held last evening.

Members of the public wanted to know from cllr Marvin his relationship with Architects in relation to the civic hall, Mr Evans asked two simple questions, however cllr Marvin refused, or claimed the 5th Amendment, to answer the questions.

Cllr Kennedy read out emails between cllr Marvin and the Architects, again Cllr Marvin refused to comment on those points.

Then cllr Parham furnished with possibly hacked emails, certainly obtained without the permission of the private email accounts.

I guess that this had clearly been thought out by cllr Parham when he clumsily tried to insinuate that in this mail trail I had either used foul language or had made comments about him (his defence was I was part of a chain), he wanted the public to believe this, my only contribution to that chain was to offer a proposal to move the Town Council forward, I was pleased after I challenged him he did agree with my statement, but I wonder if I had not challenged him he would allowed this false position to prevail.

But for clarity I publish my contribution to the mail chain;

That this Council resolve to conduct full public consultation to ascertain the wishes of the widest cross section possible of the residents of Shepton to settle the priorities and aspirations for the future of the town.

In particular, it should aim to establish a set the best options for any future use of community funds that meets the public aspirations, (including the £200,000+ collected and initially earmarked but not legally tied to a civic or community facility).

This Council agrees to allow the community engagement working party to bring forward a proposal for an independent body to conduct full consultation at the best value to the tax payer. Council will then be in a position to respond to our townspeople.

This council agrees that the results of community engagement is shared with the community and will develop new arrangements of working to allow Sheptonians real input into the governance of the Town, to make Shepton Better.."

So there we are. This is hardly worth comment is it not?

This is extremely concerning particularly concerned that my computer could well of been accessed to get these mails, it is also concerning that other personal matters could be in the view of someone else, being on my personal email account, not the council address.

I do believe it wrong for anybody and particularly an experience councillor to read out in public, emails that are essentially private and none of the people in the chain have given permission for public airing or the councillor asked if he could air, or even informed myself he had received these mails. this action does not engender trust!

Still ultimately it will be for people to decide on this, but I have contacted the Police and other agencies to investigate.

Two other pieces of business to be reported.

The Town Council wants to remove the avery birds in Collett park, the Council has no management plan, no responsible person and the Council seemly do not wish to continue to manage a risk. Cllrs Champion and Curtis did try to remove the birds without public consultation, this extraordinary following fast on the back of the Civic Hall fiasco, however we will now include consultation before making the decision in September.

The Prison has offered a visit for councillors, clearly this is related to the prison museum, but I think it is worth a visit, cllr Jeanette Marsh thought it wise to remind cllrs that the prison is not a 'peepshow', I thought this utterly disrespectful and cllr Kennedy told her so. It is utterly dreadful that cllr marsh should consider her colleagues as treating prisoners in this way, rather than showing general interest in a working prison that is in our Town.

This was a really poor meeting, the next meeting on Tuesday 10 July, I predict another difficult meeting.

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