Wednesday, 23 March 2011

An Open Letter to Anglesey's Commissioners

Dear Commissioners,

On the occasion of your first full week of work on the Island allow me to take the liberty of offering you the below well meant advice on how to make your intervention here a success:

1. Make sure that when you leave Anglesey County Council you return it with its borders intact – in other words without parts of Gwynedd or Conwy attached to it. Remember you are just visitors here, do no lasting damage.

2. You may have been appointed by the Welsh Assembly Government but your primary responsibility must always be to the people of Ynys Môn – not to your paymasters in Cardiff Bay. 

3. In order to find the required savings within the Council over the next two years you will need to make crucial decisions regarding the rationalisation of some cherished services. You must always remember that this is a task for which you personally have no democratic mandate; furthermore, due to the temporary suspension of local democracy, Anglesey residents will have nobody to hold to account for the decisions you make. For these reasons it is imperative that you tread lightly and strive to genuinely consult residents as widely as possible. Above all remember that you must always endeavour to make decisions which are best for the people of Ynys Môn — not for the Welsh Assembly Government.

4. Avoid making decisions behind closed doors.  Be guided by the example of the commissioners in Doncaster who always meet in public and publish their agendas and minutes on their own dedicated website (see here).

5. Your single most important task (and the one for which you will be judged) is to introduce a sustainable "democratic renewal" to the Island. Understand this does not simply equate to paving the way for a referendum on an Elected Mayor.  You must again consult widely and pursue several different options if you are to discover the best approach.

6. Do not repeat the mistakes of the previous Recovery Board in attempting to draw a line under the misdeeds of the past. The fracture of trust between officers and members, and between members and each other, have their roots in certain events. For these wounds to be permanently healed, these events need to be investigated properly and any misdeeds by either officers or councillors need to be dealt with correctly once and for all. If you do not do this, there will be no lasting recovery.

7. Remember that people are innocent until proven guilty. The previous policy of requiring members to 'name and shame' certain of their colleagues before the Ombudsman made an independent ruling caused great harm and lasting antagonism. If councillors are to be disciplined: do it properly, don't take shortcuts.

8. Its probably best to seek local advice before finalising your living arrangements on the Island!

Yours faithfully,
"The Druid"

27 comments:

A True Anglesonian said...

Hey Druid..fancy the Post of Interim Managing Director of IOACC ??..If the previous one and his Puppets (yes-he had other puppets as well as McGregor-Farmer Tom,Robert the Feet,Ieuan the Traitor, to name but a few)had operated as per your Open Letter there would have been no need for Bowles,the Demolition (sorry) Recovery Board or the Commissioners to penetrate and vanquish our Island...

Anonymous said...

Excellent priorities Druid. No doubt the Thrilling Three WILL be lloking at this site so if nobady else answers the question

'Are the people of Anglesey Paying For You To Be Here'?

If the answer to that is a yes, then Mr Motor Mouth and the Councillors who created this situation need hanging out to dry

Perhaps that is why the Great Escape took place.

Anglesey Islander

Prometheuswrites said...

No pussyfooting about there Druid.

Seconded.

Anonymous said...

Spot on Druid. Well said.

Borth Sachian

kp said...

Sorry, but the people of Anglesey must also share much of the blame for our current plight ... we voted for such wretched councillors and we also voted for the equally wretched WAG.

Do here whatever you want mister commissioners, but just make sure that what you do is entirely legal and that your decision making processes are entirely transparent.

I, for one, will be happy when my council tax bill goes down and the level of service provision goes up.

A not impossible task, just ask some of the English councils such as Wandsworth how to do.

Anonymous said...

As usual nothing new here - just the same old expected comments and criticisms from a politically naive and inexperienced novice (how long were you away from Anglesey Druid?). As usual, breathtakingly hypocritical and sickeningly contradictory - be open and honest - huh?! Am I reading this right - a message to Anglesey Councillors and Commissioners from someone who kept his true identity and real ulterior motives from the people of Anglesey for so long under the guise of a people's saviour when all he aspiered to was to be a Conservative Assembly Candidate? Complete tosh.

Photon said...

Da iawn Paul! I wonder when the Commissioners will follow the WAO's own recommendation and meet the people? I'm sure we have plenty of questions we'd like to put to them.

9. Remember: we're watching you!

Richard Sletzer said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Richard Sletzer said...

Sorry Photon - you squeezed in ahead of me. I didn't mean you!

Paul Williams said...

Sorry... the below post @6.59 has been edited due to having named a name:

"Richard Sletzer said...
Hmmmm. So who wrote that previous post?

- Normally, like most thread members here, I wouldn't bother about it - except that this particular post seems to encapsulate the Labour mind-set which has done so much damage to the island.

[deleted]

He uses over-the-top adjectives without justifying them - probably because he doesn't know what they actually mean. His spelling is embarrassingly poor - ("aspired" has only only one "e" in it).

In this person's book, the worst thing anyone can possibly be is a Conservative Assembly Candidate. The next most heinous offence is to have spent some time away from Anglesey.

His allegations are - as Jane Austen might say with due irony - "heavy misfortunes indeed".

Ignore him Druid - and just step over the body. His day, and that of his socialist compadres, is over."

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your letetr to the Commissioners Paul, in particular the detail of Paragraph 6, without this item being mentioned, a lot of us would have no faith in the Commissioners, if they have delegated powers to investigate " concerns" and " irregularities" then let them carry on, but if they do NOT have DELEGATED POWERS to investigate, then they should tell the victims, or in fact, contact yourself, so that way, we will know exactly what their parameters are.

Thank you Paul, for an interesting approach to having a dialogue with this deleagtion, let's see what their response is.

Anonymous said...

Clive McGregor's, Alliance "Terms of (Hate)Engagement" have gone. The trouble they cause and the intrangency behind keeping them, brought Anglesey County County to it's knees and created what we have today.

Those behind the "Terms" and fully supported them should really consider their positions untenable, if we are to move on in the way we would all like to see, otherwise, in the words of David Bowles, "There will be blood on the carpet, a very public carpet.

Photon said...

07:00 - No problem; the day I can't spell is the day I have to give up!

the illuminator said...

Paul Williams 07.32:(re Richard Selzer)

"this particular post seems to encapsulate the Labour mind-set which has done so much damage to the island."

What is this "Labour mind-set" you refer to then? Are you sure it isn't the mind-set of one (perhaps 2) individuals?

always there said...

I feel your letter to the commissioners is an excellent one and I hope they take your advice. I read the comments from councillors in the Holyhead and Anglesy Mail yesterday Wednesday 23rd March pg.2 with amazment, how much time does councillor Hefin Thomas think they should get to put things right? Why haven't they already come together to help put things right as GWR and Coucillor Bryan Owen now hopes they will. Councillor Goronwy Parry hopes they do a good job, I am not sure they could do a worse job. Our councllors are still watching out for themselves and are still jockying for position as Councillor John Chorlton has shown by hoping to create a super group to back the commisssioners action. Why wasnt it done before?

nuf said...

always there@1418

A super group! What next?

Which councillors have the qualities to be members of such a group? we need a fresh face or more...

can peeople such as John Charlotn truly offer a FRESH approach?

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, none of them can form a super group or make a new alliance, one bad apple spoils a barrel, in fact the more bad apples, the sooner the barrel rots. So what do we have?, any excuse to " pretend" that none of this mess was their doing. Get real people, if you think this rotten bunch will help you and the Council, nothing could be further from the truth. They have ignored us for years, now they want us, is this their idea of damage limitation in case the Commissioners start looking into claims, allowances and planning permissions????

simon said...

All those in the exec should now retire. they have done well out of their time as councilors, and the island needs new peopel. So, the super grop idea by John Charlton gets "Nil Point". and if a mayor is wanted, it cant be Chalrton, for sure!!!

Anonymous said...

where's the Red Flag?

Photon said...

A super group! Do these people not understand the word 'failed'?

There is a big difference between constantly reinventing yourself as Chorlton is doing, and constantly yielding successful representation for the people of Anglesey.

Flogging a dead horse doesn't make it any less dead.

The Red Flag said...

Anonymous said...where's the Red Flag?

I am here.

Ok. Look at it this way. Should the island decide to have a directly elected Mayor then each party will field an official candidate. In addition there will be a clyuch of indeependents - Peter Rogers etc.

So, there will be a candidate from Plaid, Labour, Tory, Lib Dem. Each candidate from each party will be a) chosen by that party, b) experienced, c) local, d) proabably already well known.

So I shall ask you, who do you think each party will pick to represent themselves - not who you like them to, but who they will.

Remember - they are chosen internally by their local party. (at this point remember that Labours block vote is mainly around Holyhead and therefore soemone identifiable with Holyhead voters is advantageous).

So, having got this far, do you think the core Labour vote will vote for a Labour candidate because he's Labour or because they pay any attention to what he says or may or may not have done. Likewise for each of the other parties. The core vote votes on tribal lines always has, always will - that's why it's called the core vote. It's the 'floaters' that actually look at candidates and policies and even then they will sometimes vote one way to stop something happening as opposed to actually get something they want.

Now then, in a fight between say the four established parties and say Rogers, which parties will finish in the top two do you think?

I'll give you a clue. Labour and Plaid irrespective of who their candidates are and the only thing that could stop that would be Rogers not standing AND his actually coming out to the booths to vote Tory. Then it could possibly become three-way.

Anonymous said...

Astute, Red Flag.

Ynys Mon is tribal, I grant you, but also conservative (Plaid cultural conservatives, Tories dependant on elderly incomers and small business people.) Labour voters vote Labour because they hate the other two, They aren't sure which they hate most but I'd guess Plaid in Assembly elections and Tories in National elections.


They are all conservative in that they maintain the staus quo...no matter how bad. Witness our unchanging political representatives.

If I were Paul I would cross boundaries to embrace Labour voters rather than Plaid.

Anonymous said...

intereseting Red Flag and anon:

we could have:

PC Dylan Rees
Lab Albert Owen
Tory Paul Williams
Indt Peter Rogers
Lib Dem Mandy Abrahams
UKIP Nathan Gill

(note: no current councilors!!!)

Anonymous said...

Would Albert Owen stand down as an MP to be Mayor? I doubt it - not for a few years yet. He has at least another couple of Parliaments left in him and probably has his eyes on an ermine collar.

always there said...

I think as long as the councillors just keep reinventing themselves we as an island will get no where. If we are going to vote for a mayor we need to make sure none of our present councillors are considered and no one who can be influenced by certain people, who can be described as rotten apples and who have caused problems for years.

Anonymous said...

15.04:

yes he probably would

Anonymous said...

There is an alternative to Albert Owen, his twin Benny from Crossroads.