Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Request refused - the Council and the Towy Community Church

Another item which failed to appear in the council's accounts yesterday (see previous couple of posts) was any reference to their evangelical 'partners', the Towy Community Church and the 'bowling alley' Excel Project. Given the 'manipulation' of the figures for the Council's pravda it would appear their generosity to this organisation to the tune of £1.4m was similarly untraceable in the open accounts.

The controversial relationship between the Council and the church has been much documented on this blog and elsewhere including in the press, and concerns have been raised about the possible establishment of a 'Mercy Ministry' alongside the bowling alley, so that presumably the fallen women of Carmarthen can be exorcised and score a strike at the same time. This is looking increasingly likely as the organisation intends to open 'therapy and counselling' facilities. as well as a church hall. The council has consistently failed to comment on the controversies surrounding the whole project, other than Meryl Gravell claiming that it will ease the pressure on the social care budget.

Anyway, several weeks ago I made a Freedom of Information request to the council for all correspondence between themselves and the Towy Church, the deadline arrived and it was refused under cost grounds. I found the response difficult to believe but I then made a new request limiting it to correspondence relating only to the 'Excel Project', the deadline passed yesterday, but this morning I had a response. It was refused again for exactly the same reasons.

I believe the cost limit has been falsely applied. I will request an internal review and if that is unsuccessful, which not doubt it will be, I shall be off to the Information Commissioner again. Please see full thread of the request here.

Offices of the Towy Community Church as featured on BBC Wales


Mrs Angry said...

Disgraceful. Don't let them get away with it - not that you will, of course!

Anonymous said...

Why don't you get a friendly Councillor to put in the request which, under common law, the Council has a legal duty to comply with?

caebrwyn said...

@Mrs Angry I'll do my best! I have asked for a review and will then take it further. A poor response.

@Anon Good point and noted, but I'm not sure this council worries too much about legal duties and common law!

Anonymous said...

NRS T , why not ask for less information at a time . Play the game get others to ask for emails , others for letters others for reports etc etc .

Anonymous said...

Ask the Towy Church for FOI after all their are a Christian Church and God abhors lies , deceit