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Accountability & openness : Llanigon Community Council

Report date

01/07/2022

Subject

Accountability & openness

Outcome

CODE

Case ref number

202100842

Report type

CODE - No Action Necessary

Relevant body

Llanigon Community Council

The Ombudsman received a complaint that a member (“the Member”) of Llanigon Community Council (“the Council”) had breached the Code of Conduct.

It was alleged that the Member had:

  • Behaved in a disrespectful, aggressive, and very intimidating manner towards the complainant in a Council meeting on 9 December 2020.
  • Bullied and intimidated the Clerk.
  • Discriminated towards female Members by not including them in correspondence and discussions.
  • Failed to consult full Council when taking decisions.
  • Failed to discuss the Clerks wages.
  • Failed to conduct virtual Council meetings during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Delayed having a Council website and subsequently made one himself, which was in accessible to the public, and for which he claimed a fee from the Council for maintaining.
  • Refused to provide receipts when claiming expenses.

The investigation considered whether the Member failed to comply with the following provisions of the Code of Conduct:

  • 4(b) – [The Member] must show respect and consideration for others.
  • 4(c) – [The member] must not use bullying behaviour or harass any person.
  • 6(1)(a) – [The Member] must not conduct themselves in a manner which could reasonably be regarded as bringing their office or authority into disrepute.
  • 7(a) – [The member] must not in their official capacity or otherwise, use or attempt to use their position improperly to confer on or secure for themselves, or any other person, an advantage or create or avoid for yourself, or any other person, a disadvantage.
  • 9(a) – [The Member] must observe the law and their authority’s rules governing the claiming of expenses and allowances in connection with their duties as a member.

Witness accounts were obtained from all members of the Council, the Clerk, and a County Councillor. Documentation provided by the Clerk and the Monitoring Officer of Powys County Council was also reviewed.

The Member was not re-elected at the May 2022 elections and the evidence was inconsistent. The Ombudsman did not consider that it was in the public interest to take further investigative steps. She took the decision that no action needed to be taken in respect of the matters investigated.

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