• East Devon Business Forum scrutiny appears to be back on

    14th February 2013 | News | Claire
  • On Tuesday 12 March at 6pm, councillors will reconvene to have their next meeting.  It will be just the second meeting in six months, following the decision made at the September overview and scrutiny committee meeting, to set up a scrutiny process for the forum.

    And it will be seven weeks after the 23 January meeting, which was cancelled due to snow.

    Why not have a meeting in February I hear you ask?  There’s too much on apparently.

    The process so far has been far from smooth, with incorrect minutes, an incorrect scope, weeks of unnecessary delay and agendas that bear no relation to agreed areas of discussion.  And that’s without even mentioning the thorny subject of planning being off limits.  Planning has been EDBF’s biggest influence on EDDC.

    Last autumn, the chair and vice-chair of EDBF set about lobbying the chief executive in an apparent attempt to remove a certain councillor (me) from the committee of six.

    Still, some councillors appear to be refusing to accept that this committee was set up to look at EDBF and NOT business in general, despite the minuted resolutions!

    There are signals that the committee will be allowed (?!) to get on with its work of looking into the forum’s activities (except for planning) and there are also signals that the committee membership will not be increased by several conservative councillors, as per widespread suspicion.  Let’s hope those signals turn out to be correct.

    Certainly, the EDBF scrutiny process so far has been worryingly interfered with and unreasonably delayed.

    Let’s hope this will be the start of a new process which will allow the committee to actually get on with its job, minus its unwelcome muzzle.

    The meeting starts at 6pm on Tuesday 12 March and will be held in the council chamber.  Members of the public are welcome to attend and speak.