Another Labour Leak in Liverpool shows truth being kept from Residents


Sometimes people find it hard to comprehend just how appalling the Labour party is inLiverpool. Well here’s yet more hard proof in the form of a leak to super sleuth David Bartlett.

There are two things which are sad about the leak:

The first is that this follows up a leak from Labour last week about Jan Rowley and other leaks from malcontents inside the Party on a regular basis. The development of factions inside the Labour Party is, of course, good news for the Lib Dems but bad news for the City.

The second is that it has become apparent that the Labour Group are bullied into doing what they are told to do (hence the leaks I suppose).

It is a disgrace that Scrutiny Chairs are chosen by the Mayor. When we were in control ours were elected by a secret ballot of all Lib Dems.

It is a disgrace that the Chairs of Scrutiny are considered as spokespersons for the Mayor. When the legislation establishing scrutiny was passed by Labour in 2000 it was clear that scrutiny was to be kept separate from executive. It is not the role of Chairs to be the spokesperson for the Mayor. Rather it is the role of Chairs to ensure that decisions of the Cabinet including the Mayor are properly reviewed and scrutinised to ensure good governance. It is the job of scrutiny to bring out into the open problems with contracts or the running of the council. Proper scrutiny will make a stronger council promoting better services. Timid scrutiny means that poor services will go unchallenged when there are only 16 opposition councillors out of 90.

Think I am over the top or just plain paranoid? Read on and you will agree with what I say.

Another week, another leak, and another telling off for Labour councillors in Liverpool

By David Bartlett on Jul 16, 12 01:11 PM in Labour

Another week, another leak. I’m pleased to report that Dale Street Associates is becoming the website of choice for leaks from Liverpool Labour councillors.

Following on from Pam Thomas’ ‘clean your act up ladies’ email, her boss and chief whip Alan Dean has now become the latest victim of a leak.

In his email leaked onto DSA he reads councillors the riot act for debating council shortcomings in public.

You can read the email yourselves below, but it does beg the question exactly what does scrutiny mean atLiverpoolcouncil? If you need the mayor’s permission is it scrutiny?

Cllr Dean just told me: “It was an internal Labour group document that’s the way it should have stayed; I am disappointed that it has not.”

The Labour group meets tonight for its usual pre-full council meeting. Something tells me it’s going to be fun.

Here is Deano’s email:

Re: Neighbourhoods Select Committee, 26th June 2012.
As a direct result of what happened at the above meeting, the Mayor wrote to all members of the Labour Group to clarify the process for establishing Scrutiny Panels that members of the Labour Group must follow.
Can I remind you that the Chair of every Select Committee was appointed by the Mayor and endorsed by the Cabinet and subsequently by the Labour Group? As such each Select Committee Chair carries the full authority to act on behalf of the Mayor at both pre and committee meetings of their Select Committee. That means that when they say an issue should not be pursued in open committee or a particular course of action should not be pursued at a meeting of the select committee they are speaking for and on behalf of the Mayor.

At the pre-meeting that was held prior to the above meeting Councillor Thomas made it clear that the item on re-cycling was not something that her Select Committee should be pursuing as it clearly fell under the remit of another Select Committee.

However, when the item was deal with members asked for a scrutiny panel to be established to look at the implications of the report. Again the Chair advised members that it was inappropriate for her committee to deal with this issue.

Despite this a proposition was moved by Councillor Hanson, seconded by Councillor Robertson-Collins that a scrutiny panel should be established. That proposition was agreed and carried.

I have to remind you that we are the controlling group on the Council – and not the opposition. The issues the report raised are well known to the Mayor, the Cabinet member and senior officers of the council and work has been on-going to resolve the issues identified in the report. Any shortcomings that may exist in this or any other service area of the council are not issues that we should be discussing / debating in an open, public forum until we have a clear way forward that we believe is deliverable.
Therefore I have to advise you that this Scrutiny Panel WILL NO BE ESTABLISHED. At the next meeting of the Select Committee Councillors Hanson and Robertson-Collins will withdraw their motion.

Finally, you should be aware that this e-mail has been shared with, and cleared by, Mayor Anderson prior to it being sent out to you.

Councillor Alan Dean
Labour Group Chief Whip.


About richardkemp

Leader of the Liberal Democrats in Liverpool. Deputy Chair and Lib Dem Spokesperson on the LGA Community Wellbeing Board. Married to the lovely Cllr Erica Kemp CBE with three children and four grandchildren.
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1 Response to Another Labour Leak in Liverpool shows truth being kept from Residents

  1. Nathan James says:

    Excellent comments. Am delighted you have said this above, and hope you keep hammering the point home. We need accountability and transparency. I am not surprised there are people in the local labour party who are not content given the patronising tone of this e-mail and the implication that becuase we have the mayor, he is the lord and master of all that he surveys.

    Have got Betty Boothroyd’s autobiography, and one thing she says quite clearly is that whoever is in government, the opposition have rights and the winner does not take all. This same principle should be applied to local councillors.

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