Sunday, July 13, 2008

Shadow Ethical Governance

I met with the two senior officers who have the bulk of the responsibility for the Ethical Governance portfolio.

As you know, it is a new portfolio and I needed to hear from them about what they thought the key issues would be over the coming year.

I promised faithfully to keep our discussions private, and I will, but I can tell you that I now have a clear view of what it was that the Audit Commission was really referring to when it talked about poor councillor behaviour and poor councillor/officer relationships. These things included the behaviour of councillors in the council chamber, email and verbal communications between politicians and with officers and between officers and also politicians leaking information to other politicians or to the press.

And I have agreed to do what I can to improve this. I don't see it as a party political issue, it should matter to all politicians of all parties that the public have faith in our abilities to deliver for them

I have a few pointers which I wont go into here, but I sense this year will be a fascinating one and I am excited about the possibilities of my new portfolio.

(And both officers were very open and very helpful and I look forward to working with them during the year).

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