Monday, 10 September 2012

Patronage and Favouritism!

The Labour leadership of Wrecsam Council are finding their feet and flexing their muscles and seeking to change the council's constitution to give Lead Members on the Executive Board (of whom 4 of the 7 are Labour) delegated powers to make certain decisions. Amongst the more controversial, is the delegated power granted to the Leader of the Council to authorise foreign trips and the power granted to the Lead Member to appoint Local Education Authority school governors where there are more nominees than vacancies and also to appoint council representatives onto the Fostering and Adoption panels. In the world of partisan politics like Wrecsam Council it doesn't take a lot to work out the likely consequences of such changes. The report that proposes these constitutional changes makes no mention of whether these delegated decisions will be recorded and publicly available or whether they will be restricted. Currently such decisions are made by the full Executive Board in open session and in the interests of openness and transparancy decision making should continue to be made by the full Executive Board.

3 comments:

Cneifiwr said...

Do things really get discussed in Exec Board meetings - disagreements and all? Or is it like the Carmarthenshire set-up where there are two meetings? The real meeting is closed and not recorded, while the public version is just a ceremonial rubber stamping exercise.

It's hard for us down here to imagine anything different.

Parents still get to vote for school governors though.

Anonymous said...

Stalin lives!

Plaid Gwersyllt said...

There will be a Lead Member meeting held in secret where problems amongst the coalition groups will be ironed out there, but the opposition groups which includes 3 out of 10 Exec Board members will provide challenge and scrutiny and of course it is an open meeting with the press being there. The press in Wrecsam are pretty good on the whole, they will publish critical stuff about the council. An effective opposition group can hold the executive to account which is why they want to increase lead member delegated authority and decisions being made in secret.