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Bonkers Blog March 2013

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22 March (Part 1) - Bexley council. Breaking the law again

Peter CraskeEveryone who has been even mildly amused or amazed after reading of the goings on at Bexley council should give thanks to councillor Peter Craske, for it was he who swept aside the objections to the wrecking of the B213 running through Belvedere leaving local residents and bus drivers to suffer the consequences daily. That crazy act was the spur that led to this web site and it was Craske’s cock and bull story about Residents’ Parking Permits that drove Nicholas Dowling into the arms of the Bexley Council Monitoring Group. Now he is frequently the source of stories for Bonkers, today’s blog is largely down to him.

Later Craske was so careless with security on his internet connection that it became the source of the infamous obscene blog without which Bexley would have been a duller place. He is irreplaceable.

If council leader Teresa O’Neill would kindly restore him to a cabinet position come next May local bloggers and journalists alike would be overjoyed. We miss his red faced prevarication at council meetings and his unrivalled ability to fling insults in the direction of the general public. Who do we want? “Craske”. When do we want him? "Now”.

Regular readers will be aware that Bexley council’s Constitution has been missing from their website for far too long. Kevin Fox (Head of Committee Services) has provided a number of lame excuses as to why that may be. I suspected it was illegal but my excuse for doing nothing more about it is a lack of free time. Nick Dowling is more assiduous.

When I last saw him he showed me this…
“The problem with that” says I, “is that they will have a paper copy at the Civic Centre, the lack of a web version is not illegal”. Nick had already thought of that, he had scheduled a visit and yesterday he was as good as his word. This is what he reported back…

The Contact Centre was more than helpful and eventually got me through on the phone to Sandra Baxter who informed me she was a Committee Officer.

She asked if I required any specific section but I explained I was not very familiar with the document so didn’t know and as it was not available on the Internet I wanted to look for myself. Someone was muttering in the background that he had already explained to me why it was not there. It must have been Kevin Fox.

Ms. Baxter admitted that they only had a very old paper copy of the Constitution and it had not been kept up to date.

On being so informed I asked to be put through to the Monitoring Officer, Akin Alabi, but unfortunately he was on holiday so I got Lynn Tyler, a Team Manager from the Legal Department instead. She had absolutely no idea about the legislation on this matter and freely admitted as much.

She told me to let Akin know and he would deal with it on his return. I said that as Bexley council was breaking the law and I had brought this fact to her attention perhaps she should do something about it straight away. Somewhat flustered she said she would have to talk to Kevin Fox about it. I asked if he could get back to me about the matter this afternoon [Thursday 21st March] and she told me that she would pass on my request. I felt somewhat sorry for her really – but maybe not all that much.

Nick must be a bit of an optimist. A quick response from Kevin Fox? He’s got to be joking.


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