Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Local Government Ombudsman service panned by MPs

UPDATED 27th July 2012 Local Government Ombudsman risks becoming 'pickled in aspic

Updates below original post.

MPs have delivered a scathing assessment of the Local Government Ombudsman service (LGO), saying it must conduct its own activities “with credible effectiveness” before it can criticise others.

The body which decides whether council services are up to standard should "raise its own game significantly", a report by MPs suggests.

Read the full story from the source Local Government Chronicle

Also from the BBC

The Local Government Ombudsman takes too long to deal with some cases and has to prove its value to the taxpayer, the Local Government Committee says.

Otherwise it will "undermine its own role and credibility", it adds.The committee's chairman, Labour MP Clive Betts, said: "LGO has been taking far too long to determine some cases. One of the ombudsmen conceded that the delay in determining some cases was itself likely to amount to maladministration.

"This must raise questions about the LGO's authority and credibility. The organisation needs to apply strict deadlines to all the cases that it handles."

The committee found the LGO needed to provide a "clear methodology to measure levels of customer satisfaction and publish the results".

It added: "It must also put in place arrangements to ensure there is an annual evaluation of its own activities and decision-making by an independent external reviewer, to ensure the LGO is itself fair, effective, open, transparent and accountable."

This reviewer should be appointed by the end of this year and report for the first time no later than Easter 2013, it added.

The cross-party committee said: "An organisation whose primary job is investigating and determining whether maladministration by others has taken place must itself take care to avoid maladministration by delaying justice. If it does not, it will undermine its own role and credibility."

Read the full story from the source BBC

And Local Gov

MPs have urged the Local Government Ombudsman to improve its performance in providing redress for public complaints about local services.

Clive Betts, chair of the CLG Committee, also called on the LGO to develop a clear methodology to measure levels of customer satisfaction and publish the results every year.

Read the full story from the source Local Gov

My comment: Another overpaid, not fit for purpose quango, which should have been scrapped altogether.

UPDATED 27th July 2012 Local Government Ombudsman risks becoming 'pickled in aspic

The body tasked with examining maladministration is lethargic and cumbersome and must modernise

...if the ombudsman challenged more local authority decisions and took on more cases I believe we'd have better council services.

But is the ombudsman up to that job? According to the communities and local government select committee, of which I'm a member [MP Simon Danczuk],[ it faces a number of challenges to get in shape.

The ombudsman should be the champion of those dissatisfied with their council's service. Of course the public should go through council complaint procedures first, which should themselves be speedy and efficient. But if the issue is not resolved then the ombudsman should pick up the complaint and act with vigour.

Read the full story from the source Guardian

My comment: At last the truth is out, the LGO are not fit for purpose.

1 comment:

  1. The LGO is institutionally biased toward local government and has a culture typical of local government, low work output, bureaucratic, lethargic and a belief that it has a right to do its own thing exist irrespective of its inability to fulfills it purpose.

    The LGO is unfit for purpose and should be abolished and replace by proper support for claimants against Local Government to take action via the courts.