Chairman Drew and Vice-chairman McCann bring the competency of the Parish Clerk, Mrs. Julie Leighton-Eshelby into public question by insisting that all correspondence with the Parish Council must be debated by all Councillors before she can reply to even the most innocuous enquiry.
For example, Councillors Drew and McCann (the others were not given any option!) want (???) to debate whether Hemingbrough Parish Council owns the land referred to as ‘Granny Darley’s Green’ in the Grant Application for £10,000’ written by Mr. Kenny McCann, from ‘The Big Lottery Fund’.
Surely the Clerk is competent to answer my simple question ‘Do you own it?’ without a debate (although it may be that she does not have the Council records as they are kept by the independent Hagg Lane Green Conservation Group Steering Committee).
I image the Councillors’ debate will be whether they should lie to me or not answer at all. We will find out in November when their debate can be filmed, photographed and recorded and put on YouTube. I wonder what the Yorkshire Local Councils Associations (YLCA) will make of all this?
Maybe my next question should be why was the £10,000 Grant Notification of Award for Hemingbrough Parish Council sent from ‘The Big Lottery Fund’ to “Mr. Kenneth McCann” (as he styled himself in the grant application) at his home address instead of the Hemingbrough Parish Clerk at the Clerk’s Home Address which is always the proper place for Council correspondence.
Are Drew and McCann sure they want to have all questions debated by the full Parish Council in public session? As the television comedian Jimmy Cricket would say “And there’s more!”
How about Who and why was it “agreed that the £10,000 grant received from Breathing Place for the ‘Granny Darley’s Field’ project should be transferred into the Hagg Lane Green Conservation Group account and a cheque was signed over”. According to Parish Council records that Group had been independent of the Parish Council from the year before and under the Chair of Martin Senior (also a Parish Councillor). And for a supplementary question, What were the VAT complications?
I am beginning to understand why Councillor Chilvers said “Now you know as much as I do that there were shady dealings with this” at the September 2014 Council meeting.
“Chairman’s (Drew) Opening Remarks. (October 2014) Very briefly. Just to reiterate the Council’s Policy on communications with the Clerk. All letters mail whatever form should be addressed in the first instance to the Clerk who will bring them all to the next Council meeting and the Council as a whole will decide on an appropriate answer to the correspondence. There seem to be some questions marks over this sometimes when the Clerk should answer directly. We do not want the Clerk to answer things directly because we want to know what is being said on our behalf. Obviously she wouldn’t say anything, the right things I’m sure, but nevertheless it should be our reply not the Clerk’s personal reply so all correspondence will be dealt with in that way. It will all come here and we will discuss it at the next appropriate meeting. That’s all I’ve got to say on that.”