Monday, 31 October 2011

CWaC Children in care and adoption performance tables

Children in Care and Adoption Performance Tables

Placements 1: 109=/152
Placements 2: 97=/152
Placements 3: 74=/152
Placements 4: unranked due to confidentiality

Adoption 1: 118=/152
Adoption 2: 93=/152
Adoption 3: unranked due to confidentiality

Attainment 1: 91/152
Attainment 2: unranked due to confidentiality
Attainment 3 15=/152
Attainment 4 43=/152

Leaving care 1: 140=/152
Leaving care 2: 119=/152
Leaving care 3: 12=/152
Leaving care 4: unranked due to confidentiality

My comment: A few too many low rankings?

More here Councils named and shamed over slow adoptions.

And here Cheshire West and Chester, Local authority adoption agency and local authority fostering services inspection reports.

Particularly the the latest unannounced inspection report

An old article in the Chronicle provides good background info. It will be interesting to see more recent reports from Ofsted when they are available.

Friday, 28 October 2011

CWaC Council staff misuse taxpayer funded internet access

One member of staff sacked and four others disciplined due to internet misuse at Cheshire West and Chester Council.

The figures – obtained following a Freedom of Information request by the Chronicle – relate to incidents of internet misuse between April 2009 when the authority came into existence and August this year.

A staff member was sacked for ‘bringing the employer into disrepute’ after making a comment on a social media website.

The Chronicle also asked for the 100 most visited websites by council staff during the month of August.

Google proved most popular with 28,487 hits followed by Facebook with 24,769. Other frequently visited websites included the council’s own site (5,450)

My comment: Wow! Facebook visited nearly 5 times more than their own website.

Read the full story from the source Chester Chronicle

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Staff morale ‘at rock bottom’ in CWaC council

A COUNCIL worker from Ellesmere Port says morale is at an all-time low after new terms and conditions were announced last week.

Last week, council leader Mike Jones appeared on regional TV news to defend the move. But the employee we spoke to claims he will lose £50 a week under the new terms and slammed the ‘hypocrisy’ of council leader Mike Jones – who will not suffer any drop in salary.

The Streetscene team worker refused to be named, but insisted ‘morale is at rock bottom’ since news council cost saving would hit salaries.

He said: “Steve Robinson got a one-off payment of £60,000 just for overseeing the local elections.

“These two hypocrites are telling us to take pay cuts. Imagine how much it would save if they took even a 5% pay cut.”

My comment: Whilst that's an excellent idea unfortunately turkeys don't vote for Xmas. 

Read the full story from the source Ellesmere Port Pioneer

Another CWaC cock up

Cheshire West and Chester Council is contacting approximately 3,000 social care customers following an error in its billing system.

The authority has become aware that the latest bills, dated 14 October 2011, incorrectly charge customers for an eight-week rather than a four-week period.

Mark Palethorpe, Director of Adult Social Care and Health, said: “I would like to apologise to all those affected by this computer error that has now been rectified and reassure everyone that customers will not be charged twice.”

My comment: Computers don't make errors the people who use them do. This was a mistake by a member of staff. Nice attempt at spin though.

Read the full story from the source The CWaC spin factory

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

One Team One planet, One Councillor One question

During 2010, Mike Jones leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council (in partnership with a Kevin McLeod), started a Solar Energy company called One Team One Planet Ltd .

He rightly declared his interest in the register of interests.

On the 6th July this year he removed his interest as a shareholder/partner but retained a directorship in the company.

If you type in your browser...

You are automatically redirected to a company called Maxiflow, another Solar Energy Company. UPDATE: Since this post was published this auto redirect from One Team One Planet to Maxiflow has been removed. I wonder why?

Which also has the same address as One Team One Planet Ltd.

If you search Who is for the owner of the domain name '' you will find it was registered by Maxiflow Ltd in March 2010.  

On their website Maxiflow list Cheshire West and Chester Council as one of their clients.

If you check out the directors of One Team One Planet Ltd you will find Mike Jones and Kevin McLeod listed as directors. (They originally started the company as a 50%-50% partnership). Kevin McLeod is also listed as a Director and shareholder of Maxiflow. (Details correct when checked 1/5/2011.)

If Mike Jones is employed as a director of One Team One Planet Ltd, as the latest register of interest suggests.  Then he is employed by a company which, when I checked, was partly owned by a director and shareholder of Maxiflow. Maxiflow is a company used by Cheshire West and Chester Council and other councils for contract work.

(Still waiting for companies house to confirm who now owns Mike Jones 50% of One Team One Planet Ltd. This should be available after they receive the One Team One Planet annual report.)

Therefore, my question to  CWaC Council is, why don't you  insist that councillors  declare these types of indirect interests in addition to the more obvious direct interests? 
On Company Director check Mike Jones' directorships past and present are shown.. (Scroll down the linked page to obtain specific details. ) [Please note: Information may be out of date, just because the company is shown as active doesn't imply he is still a director.  It may not be the same as the register of interest for a number of other reasons. They are updated at different times, I don't think the register of interests apply to unpaid directorships and they could contain errors. Errors which I will gladly highlight if and when they are brought to my attention.]

UPDATE 1st June 2012: GAZ2: Second notification of strike-off action in London Gazette (Section 652) has been published.

For more information about A.S.C. Developments please read my earlier blog post.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

CWaC Council leader 'Speaking at public meetings'

Further to my previous post Democracy in action CWaC Council style

Below is a video featuring 'We've moved on now Mike' telling the public how they can speak at council meetings. At no point does he mention his right to 'overlook' them when it comes to their turn to speak. Which basically means this video is just council spin.

Democracy in action CWaC Council style

The following was sent to me by a reader.

"I am watching this online. Breathtakingly arrogant behaviour by Mike Jones showing blatant utter contempt for the public.

He “missed” (accidentally or otherwise) a public speaker who was on the agenda to speak on the travellers site who was due to speak following Cllr Brian Crowe. When the man pointed this out Mike Jones said “we’ve missed it so must move on”. When he further protested, Mike Jones threatened to have staff remove him if he continued.

Then the rest of the public gallery audience protested accusing him of looking after his own interest and then one said “there’s plenty of green belt in Hargrave, why don’t you put it there?”.

They were seething as they walked out shouting abuse at him. Prior to this Cllr Brian Crowe (Saughall and Mollington) made a good speech criticising the “consultation” as almost non-existent. Cllr Crowe had just reminded Mike Jones and the Executive their obligation to the electorate.

There were a lot of angry people there, many Tory supporters. I think this one will hit the press but you are welcome to publish my account which is from the webcast. "

Below is a short extract of the webcast to illustrate the issue. Featuring 'We've moved on now Mike', leader of Cheshire County Council.

My comment: This isn't democracy in action this is autocracy. Shame on the other councillors present for not following Cllr Brian Crowe lead when he tried to  speak out in support of the member of the public who was wrongly denied the right to speak. Hat tip to Brian Crowe, a Councillor to be proud of.

Want to know what your rights to speak at a CWaC Council meeting are? Watch this video by "We've moved on now Mike" himself, Mike Jones. 

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Teacher sacked over sex and race slurs wins five-year battle to clear her name

A teacher who was sacked over accusations she abused pupils has spoken out after being cleared five years on. When Alison Addison was accused of abusing the special-needs children in her care, she thought she would quickly be cleared.

The claims – that she had physically abused the children, used racist words and had sexual intercourse with the caretaker in her school's pool – seemed too outlandish to withstand any scrutiny. Cheshire police dropped the investigation after interviewing 10 members of staff.

Despite the police decision, Cheshire County Council appointed an independent investigator who questioned the school staff.

Instead, the teacher waited five years to be free of the slurs made by a colleague that ended the career she had loved for 24 years.

She was finally cleared by the General Teaching Council for England last month when it ruled that her accusers were "not to be relied on", after hearing that she had been the victim of a "conspiracy".

Cheshire county council was split in two in 2009. One of the new authorities, Cheshire West and Chester council, said: "This case was heard by two sets of governors and was the subject of an independent investigation. This authority has no reason to doubt the actions taken at the time by Cheshire county council." 

My comment: Just how stupid are CWaC Councillors? Police dropped the case and it was only pursued by an idiot from Cheshire County Council (who may, for all we know, still be working for CWaC Council). Ignoring the fact that her accusers were invited but failed to give evidence, just what part of  'her accusers were not to be relied on' don't CWaC Council understand?

I know from experience that if an officer from Cheshire County Council or Cheshire West and Chester Council said two plus two was five councillors would believe them. 

Read the full story from the source The Telegraph

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

CWaC Council let down residents over Ways Green inquiry

RESIDENTS have accused the council of backing down in the fight against controversial plans to build 93 homes on land off Ways Green, in Winsford.

At a two-day public inquiry last week - following Anwyl's appeal - the council revealed it had withdrawn its highways objection and instead would fight the plans on the issue of appearance.

Celia Grant, who lives in Weaver Street, said residents feel hugely let down by the council.  She added: “It feels like a kick in the teeth - what are we fighting for now?

My comment: The  council often ignore highway problems when it suits them. To  suggest that they will now fight the plans on appearance is ludicrous. Highway objection could have stopped the development in it's tracks appearance won't. The $64,000 question is what 'exchanges' took place for them to remove the highway objections.

Read the full story from the source Winsford Guardian