11/06/2018 16:12:00......Posted by Mario Creatura
Many colleagues have told me that when asking questions of our Labour-run Council that they often don't receive answers for many weeks or months over the constitutionally alloted three week turnaround.
I've therefore asked the Council the following question:
'In 2015 the Labour administration amended the Council constitution. Among the many changes enacted was an alteration in the procedure for councillors submitting 'council questions' - a device by which democratically elected representatives can scrutinise the administration and seek redress for our residents.
Before these changes were made, in advance of each full Council meeting councillors were able to send in a written question to the relevant Cabinet member from which they would be allowed to orally ask a follow up question. This not only engaged councillors in the questioning process thoroughly, but ensured data was gathered in advance of the meeting to improve the quality of the questions.
The changes in 2015 removed the requirement to submit written questions in advance. Instead councillors can ask questions at any time and receive a written reply within three weeks.
Could the Leader please answer the following questions:
1. How many written council questions were submitted by councillors to the Council each year between 2010-14?
2. How many written council questions were submitted by councillors to the Council each year between 2014-18?
3. On average how many oral questions were asked in Council meetings each year between 2010-2014?
4. How many council questions were submitted by councillors to the Council each year between 2014-18?
5. Of those written questions submitted by councillors between 2014-18, how many were from the Labour Group and how many from the Conservative Group?
6. Of those written questions submitted by councillors between 2014-18, how many answers were successfully replied to within the three week stated deadline? Correspondingly, how many were late?'
The answer should be back by 15.04pm on 29th June or 2nd July at the latest. I'll update this blog as soon as I find out more.
Update: 2nd July
To the shock of nobody, I have not received an answer in time.
One of my colleagues today received an answer to a question he submitted on 21st February. That's a wait for four months when it should be three weeks. Incredible.