LAMBETH PEOPLES AUDIT -101 QUESTIONS FOR LAMBETH COUNCIL’S CABINET- Part Four
QUESTION 99: AND WHY DON’T LAMBETH START HAVING GENUINE, MEANINGFUL ENGAGEMENT WITH CITIZENS LIVING IN THE BOROUGH?
Questions 91 to 101
The Peoples Audit report says “Using the powers of the 2014 Local Audit and Accountability Act, residents of the London borough of Lambeth have found extensive evidence of financial mismanagement and failings in the council’s financial governance in 2015/16.”
91: Will you now take this report on board and investigate its findings thoroughly?
92: Or will you just totally ignore it in the same way you have consistently ignored people whose views on issues such as libraries and demolition of council estates differ from yours?
The report says “With much of its work contracted to private companies, Lambeth council seems ill-equipped to procure and manage these contracts in a consistently robust way.”
93:What steps are you taking to procure and manage these contracts in a consistently robust way?
The report says “In its dealings with property developers, Lambeth council similarly appears ill-equipped to ensure the public can trust it is getting value for money.”
94: What steps are you taking to ensure that Lambeth council is properly equipped to deal with property developers?
95: What steps are you taking to ensure the public can trust it is getting value for money?
The report says “In the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy, our findings also raise concerns about safety. “If, as it appears from our investigations, Lambeth is not in control of its contracts with building and maintenance contractors, how can residents be confident that their homes are safe?”
96: So – how can residents be confident that their homes are safe?
The report says “If concrete and brickwork repairs have not been thoroughly checked against invoices, as our report suggests, can residents of council estates in Lambeth be confident that any work on their buildings has been inspected by council officers to ensure it has been properly completed and meets all safety regulations?”
97: So – can residents of council estates in Lambeth be confident that any work on their buildings has been inspected by council officers to ensure it has been properly completed and meets all safety regulations?
The report says “Lambeth council, which describes itself as a ‘Co-operative council’, could save money and avoid cutting much-needed services if it were more open to public scrutiny and genuine, meaningful engagement with citizens living in the borough.”
98: So – why don’t Lambeth become more open to public scrutiny?
99: And why don’t Lambeth start having genuine, meaningful engagement with citizens living in the borough?
The report says “The findings of the Lambeth Peoples’ Audit also raise questions about the adequacy of audit arrangements following the abolition on the Audit Commission in March 2015.”
100: Do you consider your audit arrangements adequate, especially given what the Lambeth Peoples Audit was able to uncover despite the obstructive behaviour they were met with?
AND FINALLY, QUESTION 101….
From your friends at Defend the Ten: “Without the ‘extensive financial mismanagement’ highlighted in this report from @PeoplesAudit, would all Lambeths libraries still be open?”
The above questions have today been sent to all 12 cabinet members with the following missive:
‘Dear Cabinet Member
You are probably aware by now of the Lambeth Peoples Audit report issued last Friday which contained allegations of financial mismanagement within Lambeth council and how millions of pounds of Lambeth taxpayers money has been wasted.
News From Crystal Palace is therefore giving you, as a cabinet member, the opportunity to reply to a wide variety of allegations contained in the report.
As a cabinet member you have collective responsibility both for the management of the council and for a duty of care to all the borough’s taxpayers.
101 questions follow which, with one exception, all come from News From Crystal Palace.
This is YOUR chance to give YOUR side of the story.
The people of Lambeth look forward to hearing your detailed replies.’
EDITOR’S NOTE: Publication of this report has already generated a lot of comment on social media – the sort Lambeth don’t like reading. See LAMBETHWATCH – A TALE OF TWO MONEY TREES immediately below this item.