In response to PTC Mayor Acting Beyond Legal Powers ERYC Head of Legal Mathew Buckley claims “I cannot see an issue with this”. I ask everyone to read the following and then decide is Buckley corrupt or incompetent?
Please read Mathew Buckley – I cannot see an issue with this.
I have sent the following yesterday at 12.56. I still await a reply from Mathew.
I fully accept, and have never questioned, that statute does not prevent Dean Hodgson, private citizen, from organising such an event. All Dean had to do was use his own address, phone number and sign it Dean Hodgson but we must accept that Cllr Hodgson used the Pocklington Town Council address/phone number and signs it Cllr D. Hodgson/Town Mayor.
Firstly I refer you to the invitation attached sent out by Cllr Hodgson. Cllr Hodgson is clearly acting in his role as Cllr Hodgson/Mayor of Pocklington. The address and phone number is that of Pocklington Town Council and he signs it in the name Cllr D. Hodgson/Town Mayor.
As such The Openness of Local Government Bodies Regulations 2014 applies and the planned hustings can be recorded as per the regulations.
I refer you to the PTC Social Media Policy attached which states:
“4.7 Councillors and staff must not disclose information, make commitments or engage in activity on behalf of the Council unless they are authorised to do so by the Mayor, the Town Clerk, the full council or the appropriate sub-committee with delegated authority”
Cllr Hodgson makes a false claim that he organised the event as Dean Hodgson. Hypothetically let us accept this. No authorisation has been provided to Dean Hodgson to do this as required by the PTC Social Media Policy. Yet he clearly made commitments and used social media to promote these commitments. No authorisation was issued to Cllr Hodgson either.
Election hustings that invites candidates and the public are clearly not an informal meeting. To suggest otherwise is disingenuous.
Dean Hodgson is a candidate for the Pocklington Town Council election yet he intends to Chair/time keep the hustings. Do you agree that this is not appropriate?
Finally, please confirm that no council resources can be used to promote a political event?
Cllr Andy Strangeway
Independent – Pocklington Provincial
“The Man Who Gets Things Done”
Request To Caroline Lacey, ERYC Returning Officer
I have requested Caroline Lacey, ERYC Returning Officer, considers the response from Mathew and my concerns as a matter of urgency as the Hustings are planned to go ahead tomorrow.