Monday, March 02, 2009

Powys Chief Exec offers resignation.

Edna Mopbucket's been on the phone in one hell of a flap. She's cleaning down at Powys County Council HQ in Llandrindod Wells again this morning. Its full Council day, but the agenda looked innocuous and she was expecting a quiet day. Just thought she'd go and cast an eye over the Councillor talent (Edna's got a thing about men exuding power). When all of a sudden all hell breaks loose. The Chief Executive, Mark Kerr offers his resignation to the full Council. Edna tells me that everyone was "totally gob-smacked". So much so that the meeting was suspended while all the political groups disappeared off into corners to decide whether to accept the resignation. Apparently its something to do with an article that Mark wrote a good while back, criticising councillors. Its 1.45 now, and they are all just trooping back into the meeting to vote on it. Smart money at this stage seems to be that Mark Kerr will have a fair bit more time to indulge in a spot of gardening. Will post on this tonight, when I return home, and when the dust has settled.

20 comments:

lads said...

Come on Glyn. Let's have the rest of it. The next bit is even better - Powys County Council at its best!

Dyfrig said...

3 hours have passed since you posted this, and yet BBC Wales don't seem to think it deserves to be noted.

Glyn Davies said...

Lads and Dyfrig - I'm told that he has now resigned. I'm also told that there's an inquiry going on about how Edna got to know about this. Unfortunately, she never reveals her sources - even to me. But we do have one strict rule. We never comment on the basis of information sourced from a Conservative Councillor. In this one instance though, because the finger is being pointed, totally unfairly, at Conservatives Cllrs., I will give a clue. The information was communicated to the media during the morning from the Council Offices - and it was the media which informed Edna of what was going on.

Fletcher Christian said...

I would have thought as an ex naval man that he would have gone down with the ship.With the captain having left the ship with the bread fruit I'm sure that the crew will now sail for the dusky maidens.

Anonymous said...

I was at Llandod today Glyn.. the hunts on for Ednas'source with both the Independent Front for Powis and the Powys Independent Front pointing the finger at each other....not the Tory Group his time.

I hear that Edna and her cleaning crew are all under the spot light and she is to be sent back to that other centre of fun and frolics at in Cardiff Bay.

Well done on this coup Glyn..can't way till your elected and we get all the best bits from Westminster.

Anonymous said...

Powys County Council appear to be nose-diving into a deep hole. Waht a mess it has got itself into, particularly in the planning department.

It needs to employ suitably qualified and EXPERIENCED planners.

"Just some DC guy" said...

Hmmmm - Fee Fi Fo Fum, I smell the blood of the Spin Doctor! (The 'Wales on Sunday' version.)

So Edna has been outed as a communication mechanism devoid of conservative party finger prints - 'no surprises there then'.

Anonymous said...

So the media was Edna's source. Since the media got the news from individual(s) in the Council Offices where is this investigation going to go?

Anonymous said...

Anon (07:25:00 PM)> but Edna's source was the media itself.

Anonymous said...

Glyn,

Do you think the dust will ever settle in County Hall?? Its all just a matter of time before the next row erupts amongst the walls of County Hall but I am sure Edna will keep you informed - who ever she (or he?) may be......

Glyn Davies said...

Fletcher - it was more akin to 'walking the plank'. I think he started to walk, and expected everyone to call him back - but they didn't.

Anon 1 - Ever since we made Eric Pickles our Party Chairman, Edna is desperate for me to win. She really fancies him.

Anon 2 - Mark Kerr had expressed his determination to invigorate the planning service. Hope this is not put on the Backburner now.

DC - Edna is not going to like being dismissed as a communications mechanism. Might just start turning on US-based scientists!

Anon 3 - Perhaps the 'Acting Chief Exec' will persuade Councillors to waste another few thousand on another 'Whistleblower' investigation.

Anon 4 - But who told the media?

Anon 5 - She's been on again tonight telling me that there's a lot of dissatisfaction with the Council Leader now. Could be one to watch.

Anonymous said...

Having great fun this evening reading all the catch up comments from other bloggers Glyn....pints all round...and a G+T for good old Edna and her mates with the mops.

DC guy said...

Glyn> Of course Ms. Mopbucket is far beyond being a mere communications vessel; I was bad for so suggesting.

Ms. Mopbucket's influence is clear for all to see, look at how Plaid has two heads - one for nuke power and one against nuke power. One head for top-up fees and another head against top-up fees. Medusa regards Plaid as her mentor.

Powys Voter said...

Read this with interest but it leaves a bitter taste. In my opinion blogging about rumours/leaks is just as bad (if not worse) as the people who leak information in the first instance.

Would you blog at the rumoured death of person? Rumoured job losses at a local business and name it? Just as unsettling for staff/customers/families/a community maybe?

I am interested to hear your thoughts.

Glyn Davies said...

Powys Voter - Actually, it was not rumour. I knew what was happening, and considered it to be in the public interest. As I posted, my information came from a media source. If you want to criticise someone, try to find out who from the Council went to the trouble of informing the media during the morning. I would not have posted this, without being certain it was true, as would be the case in the othere instances you mention. It so happens that Edna has also been told about changes in the system of awarding Small Business Grants, and about another sensitive Council Report - but I have not blogged on them because this brief reference may lead to a change in what is intended. Its in the public interest that Councillors know that what they do may be commented on.

Anonymous said...

If Powys Council was an open public body that trusted its people then there would not be so many leaks and staff problems.

Your writer seems to be less interested in us the people Radnor etc and more in keeping the lid on the game...any vested interest i wonder?

Anonymous said...

Just back home from from County Hall Landod Glyn --- more to report i am afraid. You were right about the plotting and blame game - - its all we staff hear from members/officers and yes the cleaning staff. Todays worry is which of the several private reports due out soon - Mrs Bucket is going to out!!

Maximum security measures are being planned and a new signing in/out proceedure is to be brought in....just like in the movies!

Anonymous said...

There was once an Admiral in charge at County Hall. Unfortunately we will now presumably have a former White Van driver taking over the helm - he's already installed as Interim CEO. It appears that he has been carefully manicured for the job having been allowed to undertake a MBA in work time as Executive Director and sent on chief executive "grooming" courses at great expense to the Powys local tax payer. Unfortunately he has neither the intellectual capacity or persona of his predecessor and has by all accounts been gunning for the Admiral to lay down his arms, undermining him at every opportunity and buttering up key Members of the Board for this exact moment. Powys County Council must MUST appoint from outside the organisation to modernise effectively an ailing Council who are ignored at the highest level in the Assembly and laughed about throughout Wales. We the Powys electorate deserve better than the senior management team in Powys: we seem to have Councillors and officers who are equally ineffectual with neither being able to reach decisions that benefit Powys. Are the Councillors able to make one decision that is absolutely necessary i.e. appoint someone that can drag the Council into the 20th....no, the 21st century?

Irritated_By_Whingers said...

Hhhmmm - a strange and toxic post by anonymous there.

Seems to be mourning the loss of MK whilst saying "an ailing Council who are ignored at the highest level in the Assembly and laughed about throughout Wales". So did he do a good job or not?

And whats this about the cllrs not being able to make the decsion to bring someone in from the outside? Thats what they did last time, and according to anon's comments the council is still 'ailing'?

Very odd logic indeed.

Anonymous said...

It is clear that "Irritated_By_Whingers" comments come from someone from within the Council, probably a councillor or someone close to the interim CEO. Irritated s/he may be but this Council is in clearly in desperate straights as the debacle of last week's pantomine of political (??) groups scuttling around County Hall to debate and actually vote for the resignation of the Chief Executive who has only spoken his mind and said the truth. The reality is that our local councillors including the Board members are unable to make difficult strategic executive decisions. As another blogger has remarked, in authorities such as Powys where no one can be certain how councillors will vote on a proposal only leads to chaos and ridicule. He also states rightly that the resignation of the Chief Executive is a clear sign that there is something wrong with the decision making process in the County. Independent members are quite unable to devise a strategy and a vision for the future of our area. What they do is revert to type and get emotional about trivia, such as ending free lunches for councillors. This is why they become so animated over planning decisions. In Powys there are no large scale regeneration or economic development proposals as we find in other parts of Wales or indeed in Herefordshire/Shropshire; instead they deal with minutea - the odd house in the countryside or barn conversion where the identity of the applicant rather than the planning merits of the proposal results in such heated debate. What the public of Powys wants is attention given to the credit crunch and economic recovery. But we do not have councillors with the intellect to achieve strategic local government - not surprising given that they emerge from the parochialism of Community Councils rather from the real world of commerce or industry. I am sure that Mr Kerr has been worn down by trivia and the lack of capacity within his own Board to deliver a modern service. A previous blogger also mentions the interim CEO. We remember him as an assistant solicitor in Shropshire not so long ago as a nice guy but not of Chief Exec material. Has his training since been so fruitful or is it an indictment of Powys where mediocrity seems to dominate?