This is part 2 of Cllr Duffy's correspondence with Cllr James Allie who will be chairing the Standards Committee tonight:
Dear James ,Here is part two of my concerns please ensure the co-opted member are given a copy. Also if you are not the person or committee who deals with these issues please pass them on to the CEO with the questions as a FOI .(A) Committee attendanceJames as a member of the Labour group you are probably aware that I have been left off committees for the past two years. You maybe also be aware that I won an election to be on scrutiny committee but was then removed and was not placed on any committee whatsoever this year. This is in-spite of the fact that attendance at committee meetings is very low and the recommendation from the Penn report concerning the death of CIIr Oladapo (Tayo) said under 2.What, if any, improvements the Council should implement"(i)consideration should be given as to whether every member of the Council should sit on a sub- committee or committee as well as Full Council to improve the potential for attendance and thereby avoid the possibility of breaching the six months rule. This could also obviate the current practice of using the substitution arrangements to enable members to avoid breaching the six months rule".I know you have witnessed the exchange of emails between the Labour Party chief whip Cllr Kabir and myself about this issue of me being removed from all committees. Therefore you can imagine my surprise when just before full council meeting on last Monday! Cllr Kabir told me that she had put me on the Licensing committee replacing Cllr Sabina Khan , without asking my permission or my availability .I informed Cllr Kabir that I would not stand as I believe it was just cover-up to hide the fact Cllr Khan had moved out of Brent sometime previous and she was not willing to attend any more meetings than the bare minimum. I also told Cllr Kabir I was not good enough for the leadership to nominate me for any committee meetings in May, therefore what had changed by September.I was at the time and subsequently concerned that the Labour leadership are not being transparent to residents that I am being brought into a deception without my knowledge. Also in the Penn report it said "consideration should be given to the way in which ‘apologies for absence’ are managed. Currently there is no requirement for the member concerned to tender their apologies directly or personally as these can be tendered on their behalf by another member or an officer". I am concerned that the apologies are being managed by the Chief whip in a blanket fashion and do not relate absences due to illness or any other reason , just the unwillingness of Cllr Khan to travel to Brent.I wonder if under standards you would be willing to start an investigation into(1) When did Cllr Khan Leave Brent?(2) Was the CEO and the Head of Legal informed ?(3) If not why not ?(4) Did the CEO and HOL give any advice?(B) HospitalityAs you know there has been a successful planning application for Tottenham Hotspurs to play at Wembley , many people suggested Tottenham got a good deal and many local Cllrs objected to the conditions. I have been informed by a member of the public both the Leader of the council Cllr Butt and lead member for Regeneration and planning Cllr Tatler have received hospitality from Tottenham since the planning permission was granted. Whereas I have some understanding that we need to keep relations open with the Wembley and their tenant Tottenham, However I do not understand why the lead member for planning should participate in hospitality as this could seemingly bring the planning system into disrepute , therefore I ask you to ensure both these councillors and any others who have participated in Hospitality declare the reasons why they were offered hospitality and did they check it with the CEO,before excepting also if you could enquire(1) How many tickets were received and value.(2) Who attended the matches with them.(3) Reason for the hospitality ( sometimes its OK to look at an issue of say crowd control ,traffic management, or a new street cleansing practise. However receiving hospitality should not just be for a "Jolly Boys outing@ for them and their family that is not acceptable)(4) Can you also enquire whether any other Councillors , Officers or relative have received hospitally from Tottenham or Wembley stadium.In my experience its best to keep clear of hospitality from developers as ' When you dance with a developer, its always to their tune". I hope you see that a declaration alone without reason is not enough, what we must consider is what the average man /women in the street would think, that is why I ask you to look at the issue.