Working Behind Closed Doors is not Good For Democracy
IN her letter in last week s Ely Standard, Jackie Petts contests that the Ely Masterplan has been highjacked by the politically correct. The truth though is that Cllr Allen should be applauded for exposing the way in which the Masterplan was put together.
IN her letter in last week's Ely Standard, Jackie Petts contests that the Ely Masterplan has been highjacked by the politically correct. The truth though is that Cllr Allen should be applauded for exposing the way in which the Masterplan was put together. Councillors acting behind closed doors, out of sight and away from public scrutiny and never be good for local democracy.
There can be little doubt that Ely will benefit from a Masterplan, helping it to secure a bright future for this wonderful city. However, such a plan will only be a success if it is inclusive rather than exclusive. A plan devised and constructed behind closed doors was never going to achieve this, and was always going to be open to the accusation that it had been designed to maximise private rather than public gain.
As members of the public, we have every right to expect councillors to be open, honest and transparent. Councillors would do well to remember that they are elected representatives and have a duty to act in accordance with the law and with due regard to the standards laid down in the Council's Code of Conduct. Jackie Petts may wish to dismiss these standards as "mind numbing protocol", but in doing so she shows contempt for the electorate. If councillors show disdain for the rules that govern their behaviour, which are there to protect the public interest, they cannot then complain when outsiders call into question their integrity.
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