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Bonkers Blog June 2013

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21 June (Part 5) - It leaks like a rusty old tub, and is about as frightening

I’ve just returned from watching the News Shopper photographer take some snaps of Nick Dowling and his busted recorder outside the Civic Centre so look out for a feature on their website soon. There was no sign of Mr. Moore taking up my invitation.

The Bexley Times beat them to it, I think they must have nicked the story from Bonkers. Can’t blame them but the NS does things more professionally - I tipped them off as soon as the meeting ended.

Yesterday we had Bexley council in turmoil again. On Wednesday they held a public meeting in closed session contrary to law; how do they get out of that? My suggestion to Nick was that they would simply lie and say they all went home dejected, but Nick pointed out that that would require the connivance of Labour councillors and some of them may actually be honest.

As well as wriggling out of Wednesday they had to formulate a new policy for cocking a snook at Eric Pickles on future occasions. I can now tell you what their considered solution is. Thank goodness for the anonymous messaging facility.

The Chairman should begin by stating that audio/visual recording of proceedings is only permitted with the permission of the Chairman and should also state whether any permission had been granted.
The person(s) concerned should be informed that the Council’s agreed approach requires prior consent from the Chairman of the Committee for any audio/visual recording. If no such consent has been given proceed to stage 3.
The person(s) concerned should be warned that the audio/visual recording is disrupting the meeting and that they are being warned under Standing Order 75(5) that they will be asked to leave the meeting if they persist in recording.
If the person(s) continue to attempt to record proceedings they should be asked to leave the meeting.
If the person(s) do not leave the meeting the meeting should be adjourned if the business is being disrupted.
If the person(s) refuse to leave the meeting room the Committee Officer will establish if there is another room in which the meeting can be re-convened.
Prior to re-convening the meeting the Committee Officer will ask the Hallkeeper to prevent access to the re-convened meeting by the members of the public causing disruption.
The meeting will proceed in an alternative room so long as a suitable room is available.
If a suitable alternative room is not available the meeting will stand adjourned until a later date.

The full version is here. I can’t see any reference to consulting the Government Department to ensure that what they propose is compliant with Eric’s intentions towards local authorities.


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