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Bonkers Blog April 2013

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19 April (Part 3) - Turning over a new leaf?

I have a dream that Bexley council will one day transform itself into an honest and open organisation, beyond reproach and criticism. Fat chance of course while Teresa O’Neill is in charge but I continue to grab at every passing straw in the hope that Bonkers might become redundant.

Next week there is to be a proper council meeting; one where the public can ask questions. There’s not been one of those for six months.

The Agenda is quite remarkable and there hasn’t been one quite like it for at least two years. Four members of the public, all genuine - no political stooges, have put forward questions. I either know or have exchanged emails with all of them, and none of their addresses has been published in an act of spite by a resentful leader.

The first three questions, from my occasional contributors, Mick Barnbrook, Nicholas Dowling and Elwyn Bryant all require one word answers. Yes or no. That should leave plenty of time to answer the fourth question. Assuming we do not see a bout of juvenile filibustering by Cabinet members this should lead to a civilised meeting without any hysterics from the mayor. Well we can hope.

Seán NewmanCouncillors have asked a total of 32 questions. I rather like Labour councillor Seán Newman’s “Why is the Constitutional Review taking so long” and Stefano Borella’s (Labour again) “Could the Cabinet Member for Finance and Corporate Services outline the progress towards all staff employed by Bexley Council or through our sourced procurement in social services, being paid at least the London living wage?”

At a quick glance there is only one sycophantic crawling up the cabinet’s backside style of question and it comes from Sybil Camsey (Conservative) who is on a mission to be recognised as the chamber’s potty councillor. “Could the Cabinet Member for Education update us on the numbers of children who have been offered their first or second choices of school for September for both Primary and Secondary Schools?”

Everyone who attends meetings regularly knows that John Fuller has done quite well with this and will happily sooth the false concerns of Silly Sybil. Somebody had to let the side down.


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