Thursday, 24 May 2007

More offers!

Following the election result, the Leader of the Council, John Williams, stated publicly in the Echo that a new approach was required by the Labour Group and Cabinet. He said they had learnt their lesson from some humiliating public defeats (my phrase, not his!) and wanted to re-direct the Council towards a more open, responsive and democratic culture.

As a first step towards this, John Williams has announced that the Leaders of the Conservative and Liberal Democrat Groups, as well as the Labour Chair of the Resources Scrutiny Comittee and the Chair of the Darlington Partnership, who is not a Councillor, would be invited to attend meetings of the Cabinet with the right to question members of the Cabinet.

Martin Swainston has accepted this offer on our behalf, but frankly, we don't trust the Labour Party one inch when they claim to have discovered democracy and openness. So far their "concessions" are little more than window-dressing: the one-party control over Cabinet and the Scrutiny Committees has not changed at all.

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