The issue of openness and accountability within Pembrokeshire County Council has bubbled to the surface once again following the two reports which have sent shockwaves through the authority.
Opposition members have long argued that unelected council officers have too much influence, leaving most democratically elected members sidelined.
The Estyn report detailed instances where officers have “managed” information provided to councillors by removing details. It adds that officers do not routinely share information fully with elected members.
The joint Estyn and CSSIW report said senior officers do not provide elected members with the information necessary to discharge their responsibilities for safeguarding.
It paid particular attention to the role of the Chief Officers Management Board (COMB) – made up of the chief executive Bryn Parry-Jones and other senior staff, including departmental directors. Meetings of COMB have no standing agenda items and no formal records of meetings.
My comment: This case highlights a common problem with many councils. Weak and pathetic, or conspiring councillors allowing a cabal of senior officers to control their councils. Now let's see if the councillors have the balls to do the job they were elected to do. And that includes sacking those responsible. The only alternative is for the electorate to vote out the idiots who allowed this happen in the first place, the councillors.
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