Oil Leak 68 More from the Highland Council

Following on from oil leak 66 in relation to our Highland Councillors and specifically Black Isle Councillors McCallum and Barclay in relation to their failure to respond to constituents and their “lack of complaints” from constituents.

Interestingly we received further emails telling a similar story such as this one from a correspondent on the Black Isle:

We were absolutely shocked to read that some Councillors were denying ever having received any communication from the community they represent regarding opposition to S2S oil transfer at anchor in the Moray Firth.

On 5th December we sent letters to David Alston and Jennifer Barclay, among others. See attached photo verifying the date these letters were composed. They were sent the following day.
I also attach the letters we sent to Councillor Alston and Councillor Barclay.
On 16th January we sent an email to David Alston, Isobel McCallum, Jennifer Barclay and Craig Fraser. The only person to reply to this email was Craig Fraser who responded on the 17th January.
I can also confirm that that we also sent emails 3 weeks ago now – to Cllr’s Barclay, Alston and McCallum. We have been in communication with Cllr Fraser for past year and he has made his objection to STS very clear so there was no need to write to him,  however, the others have remained silent – we do not know their views or if they are willing to take forwards their constituents representations.
I personally find this unacceptable that elected representative can choose to behave in this way. Interestingly another helpful correspondent sent us through a link to the standards for councillors. You can read it here: http://www.gov.scot/Resource/Doc/334603/0109379.pdf
Some potentially pertinent points:


You have a duty to uphold the law and act in accordance with the law and the public trust placed in you. You have a duty to act in the interests of the Council as a whole and all the communities served by it and a duty to be accessible to all the people of the area for which you have been elected to serve, and to represent their interests conscientiously.

You have a duty to promote and support these principles by leadership and example, and to maintain and strengthen the public’s trust and confidence in the integrity of the Council and its councillors in conducting public business
You must respect all other councillors and all Council employees and the role they play, treating them with courtesy at all times. Similarly you must respect members of the public when performing duties as a Councillor.
Conduct at Meetings 
3.2 You must respect the chair, your colleagues, Council employees and any members of the public present during meetings of the Council, its Committees or Sub-Committees or of any Public Bodies where you have been appointed by, and represent the Council. You must comply with rulings from the chair in the conduct of the business of these meetings. 
Has this code been infringed? Should a complaint be made? Councillors ignoring emails, confirming receipt but not providing a response or just not responding, denying having had any representations? – a councillor who walks out a community council meeting saying “i’ve heard this all before”? It’s up to those who feel aggrieved to take things further – in case anyone wants – here’s the contact details:
Office of the Chief Investigating Officer
44 Drumsheugh Gardens

Tel: 0300 011 0550 Fax: 0131 220 5419

E-mail: investigations@ethicalstandards.org.uk

 Meanwhile if anyone else has had problems with their councillors on this issue – whether on the Black Isle or elsewhere, let us know please!