Reporting from our new “Old Fogies avoiding the coronavirus” bunker
We bring you the latest report from Burscough in its fight for a just engagement with Lancashire County Council and other protagonists so as to secure a flooding policy and a comprehensive flood management strategy that totally mitigates for the safety of people and property in Burscough. LCC continues the saga of what can only be a county tantrum.
the Secretary of Burscough Flooding Group Wrote
“Dear Rachel Crompton, Lancashire County Council
“As you know we have attempted to contact LCC, with some urgency, in order to discuss the Jacobs report since both Councillor Pope and yourself left your your own meeting about the report (20th Feb), with Burscough Flooding Group, after Councillor Pope stated that Council Officers were unable to talk when a recording device was operating, causing it to end.
“Obviously the single Council Officer who remained (but would not have the meeting) was aware that it was perfectly normal and a legal provision that the public be allowed to record meetings with Lancashire County Council covertly; and that Burscough Flooding Group (BFG) were simply being polite, open and honest, in informing LCC that it wished to openly record the meeting, first by email in advance (9th Feb) and then again in the meeting (20th Feb) when it started recording.
“You must realise that residents will inevitably perceive that it is very odd for LCC to first refuse to share the draft Jacob’s report with the BFG and Burscough Parish Council, and then, by leaving their own meeting, fail to take any of their views into account when finalising it. Especially as, without the agreement and assistance of both BFG and Burscough Parish Council, the current Jacob’s report would have not have been produced.
“It is deeply unfair that only the parties, LCC, West Lancashire Borough Council (WLBC) and United Utilities (UU), with large vested financial interests, have shaped and approved the publicly funded report on Burscough’s flooding problems, whilst they simultaneously prevented public oversight of its production. Because of the lack of public oversight, the final Jacobs report has basic errors including understating the responsibilities of LCC, WLBC and UU, and being almost entirely uncritical of them. Therefore, there is a certain inevitability that the public will perceive that the report is a whitewash.
“We are available for telephone conference or a skype meeting”.
Surely it can’t be too long before the BFG considers if it and its members are being treated unfairly and think it may be a human rights issue for them. The Human Rights Act applies to the individual or organisation causing the problem, and applies to all public authorities and all other bodies, whether public or private, performing public functions. The public authorities include local authorities and those that carry out public functions, for example privatised utilities like water companies (UU).
It’s to be hoped that those who work in a public authority, LCC and WLBC, know their responsibilities under the Human Rights Act and are not abusing them in the case of Burscough and the BFG?