Monday 3 December 2012

Inquiry refused

The reluctance by ministers in Cardiff to take a closer look at Carmarthenshire Council continues. Following the BBC Week In Week Out programme in October about the Breckman case, Rhodri Glyn Thomas AM wrote to the Ministers, Carl Sargeant and John Griffiths to request a public inquiry.

Mr Thomas recognised, possibly due to the amount of correspondence he has had from constituents concerning the planning department over the years, that the programme;

"resonated within Carmarthenshire and the wider region....I have said for a number of years to Welsh Government Ministers, the Ombudsman and the Wales Audit Office that confidence in the planning authority is fast diminishing. The findings of the Ombudsman and public response to this week's television programme confirm that position"

Here's the response;

Whether it has anything to do with a Plaid Cymru AM trying to appeal to Labour ministers about a Labour run authority I wouldn't know. Mr Thomas' first hand knowledge of wider concerns about the planning process in Carmarthenshire are brushed aside. The Ombudsman's comments concerning the Breckman case which included the accusation that the authority was 'turning a blind eye' to what was going on surely warrants further public examination.

The 'steps being taken' by the council do not include, as we know, any sort of public debate on the report. Recommendations to review their enforcement policy have been kept in-house. Yet another 'Task and Finish' group of councillors have been asked to tag on the complex area of planning enforcement as part of their wider review of littering, parking and other enforcement issues.
Advice to the group will be given, naturally, by the very officers who were criticised by the report.


Anonymous said...

Anyone who watched this programme and heard the views of both the Ombudsman and the retired Planning Inspector would/should take the view that there are some very serious issues which need addressing. To 'turn a blind eye' to breaches of planning regulations is serious in itself, but to then mislead others and smear complainants names, I would have suspected comes under the heading 'misconduct'. If the Minister believes otherwise we the public, would all love an explanation. How much more serious does it get?

Anonymous said...

I hope Rhodri Glyn Thomas AC/AM is planning (pun intended) on pursuing the request for a public enquiry. John Griffiths AC/AM needs to be reminded of ALL other planning cases that have brought CCC into disrepute.

nospin said...

The reference to the "wider problems" I suspect was intended to ensure the council could not repsond that this was a one off unique case.

AS Anon 1 points out loads of rules , procedures and probably basic laws were broken in this particular case.

If WAG in all it's incompetence will not do anything the local MP needs to bring it up with A) SoS for Wales and B) Uk Parliament C) Eric Pickles,or perhaps PC can do it as a Welsh "concern".

If CC (in particular planning) get away with this exposure there is no stopping them.

caebrwyn said...

Alan Evans from St Clears, Carmarthenshire has put up a petition to call for an inquiry;