Sunday, September 28, 2008

QUESTION: Why did Colin CoverUp write this email to standards watchogs - but never send it...?

ABOVE is an email that Colin Hilton, the chief executive of Liverpool city council, wrote to the Standards Board to officially complain about the conduct of former council leader, Mike Storey.

Amazingly, and for reasons best known to himself, CoverUp NEVER SENT this email to the Standards Board.

It was written after a council investigation into the Storeyteller leaking details of The Harbarrowboy's heart condition to Joe Riley at the Oldham Echo.

The email outlines nine potential breaches of codes of conduct by the Storeyteller.

CoverUp told Jason Harbarrowboy that he had sent the letter and had made an official complaint to the Standards Board about the Storeyteller's conduct.

This was a lie. He did nothing of the kind.

The Harbarrowboy was astonished months later when he discovered that Hilton had never sent the email! He had kept it.

After a complaint by Jase, the Standards Board are now finally investigating the circumstances outlined by CoverUp's email - and how Storeyteller leaked details of the Harbarrowboy's health to the Oldham Echo.

If the Standards Board eventually find against the Storeyteller on this charge - one of several - it would also be curtains for Hilton.

It would mean that he had been complicit in a grave breach of the city council's Code of Conduct.

Yet he failed to draw it to the attention of the proper authorities.

We might also conclude that CoverUp has 'gone native' and thrown in his lot with the Lib Dims, forever compromising the last tatty remnants of his professional integrity.

The plot thickens.

Now read on...

16 July 2007



The Standards Board for England,
Fourth Floor,
Griffin House,
Lever Street,
M1 1BB

Dear Sirs,

I write to refer to you details of what I consider to be a breach of the Council’s Code of Conduct by Councillor Mike Storey CBE. I enclose a copy of my recent letter to Councillor Storey in which I set out the grounds for this referral.

As you will be aware Councillor Storey is a senior councillor and a member of the Council’s Executive Board. My Investigations have led me to conclude that he has supplied a story to the media consisting of confidential information about the health of a senior employee without any attempt to either check the particular facts or to discuss internally whether or not such information needed to be released and, if it did, what would be the best way to present such information so as to exercise care towards the employee and protect the reputation of the council.

Whilst the councillor is also a Director of the Council’s Capital of Culture Company (to whom the senior employee concerned reports directly) neither the service nor the employee comes directly within the councillor’s portfolio and the matter was not, therefore, within the responsibility of the councillor. I can think of no proper motive for the councillor having directly approached the media to disclose the information but, in any event, the councillor denies so doing. I set out below extracts from the Council’s Constitution which I believe to be relevant.
Member Officer Protocol (copy enclosed):-

Para 6.1 – must keep confidential information confidential

Para 6.3 – information about someone’s private or business affairs – will normally be confidential (in my view this must include the health of an employee and even if it were necessary to make a public announcement about the health of a senior employee that should have been done properly through the Council by the appropriate people).
Para 7.1 – personal relationships must be based on mutual respect

Para 7.3 - must strive to avoid developing antagonistic competitive relationships with each other.

Para 10.2 – members should not become personally involved in staffing matters

Employees Code of Conduct (also in Council’s Constitution)

Page 5/26 of the Constitution reproduces Paragraph 74 of the National Conditions of Service for APT&C staff:-
“Information concerning officers’ private affairs shall not be supplied to any person outside the service of the employing authority unless the consent of such officer is first obtained.”

Members Code of Conduct

Paragraph 2(b) - treat others with respect

Paragraph 2(c) – not do anything which compromises or which is likely to compromise the impartiality of those who work for or on behalf of the City Council.

Paragraph 3(c) - a Member must not disclose information which he believes is of a confidential nature without consent.

Please note that in view of the importance of this matter the Council’s Monitoring Officer has been involved in advising me and, therefore, in the expectation that you will decided to investigate this matter I would request that the investigation be carried out by one of your own Ethical Standards Officers.

Yours sincerely

Colin Hilton
Chief Executive


Anonymous said...

Bloody hell. That is sensational.

Rowdy said...

astonishing stuff

Prof said...

Oh dear,it is rather sad to see this. Call me an old fool, but in spite of everything, I have always held out a bit of hope for Mr Hilton, hope that he is at heart, a decent chap who has had to deal with the legacy of Sir Diddy's vile greedy little empire, where so many are part of the corrupt little house of cards and that he would perhaps found it impossible to bring it down.

Hope that in spite of the charges of covering-up, and the attacks on people trying to speak the truth, that he may have been biding his time to slowly get rid of the poison, even if it did eventually mean paying the bastards off. But then we also look at cuts in services, the renewal of stinking thieving contracts. The big bonuses, PRP, Spying on officers and members.

I suppose after the demise of Sir Diddy, when we all had great hopes for a change and an end to the bullying and corrupt practices, that young Colin would be the man to finally bring about that change and restore some integrity to the administration.

But there remains another deep source of poison beside the cabal and its legacy. It is Storey. If this communication was deliberately withheld to protect the ego maniac and posturing buffoon Storey, then Hilton has truly been infected and there is no cure.

Storey is the malignancy that has run right through this entire sorry period. He is the man who brought the Henshaw regime and the cabal to Liverpool and who then allowed them to plunder the entire city.

Then when Henshaw, and his cohorts bit Storey’s scrawny backside and forced him to run away before he had to fully face the music, the idiot Bradley, brought him straight back. This kept the odious wretch in a position where he continued to infect the city, members and officers and irrevocably damage the integrity and reputation of the entire Liverpool Lib Dem Party. He will also now be responsible for destroying Bradley.

Storey. The man destined to be our Lord Mayor in 2009.
Come on Lib Dems show some last vestige of honour before the end of the year and just publicly (leak it to the press if you like) tell him to F*** - Off!

No end to it said...

"Cover up covers up" the headlines in the Oldham Echo won't say

Tori Blare said...

It only takes one rat to spread the plague

Anonymous said...

So when is this "exclusively" going in the Daily Post?

Anonymous said...

i agree with prof the storyteller is going to be our lord mayor next year and represent this city. God help us all. It is a disgrace that this can happen.

Prof said...

Quite right Tori, or a single irritating little flea. Speaking of parasites, Hasitall didn't post the copy of the email did he? or did the Doctor find it?

Anonymous said...

Is there a prize for the best answer here?

The Tonys said...

Yes. Good idea! Unfortunately, now that all the money has been spent it cannot be a cash prize or a mega pay-off. How about a bucket of whitewash?

Correspondent said...

Tomorrow's edition of Newsnight Review on BBC2 will be broadcast live from Liverpool, asking what, if anything, has been the lasting legacy of 2008 for the city. Yes, I know, don't laugh, I'm merely paraphrasing the blurb on the Newsnight website ( ). If you want to post a comment, bear in mind that you have to register with the Beeb's messageboard, but this shouldn't take more than a few minutes.

Anonymous said...

Just found this diary, and all I can say is wow. Always new this council was full of it..

Great blog kid. The only worrying this is you seem to like that tart Pete Price. Still no one is perfect.

Anonymous said...

You need to examine Pete's blog a bit more carefully....

Correspondent said...

There's a ten minute discussion between the Newsnight Review panel (& Roger McGough), entitled, "Review Uncut -- After Hours Debate" on the Newsnight website ( ). Aside from a couple of telling points by Holly Johnson & Roger McGough, it's the sort of cosy chat which will please the council & Culture Company.

Professor Y. Chucklebutty said...

Having just seen the Oldham Echo spin of all spins on the "closing event" for 2008 do i win a prize for predicting the Kareoke and a Catherine wheel content.
Ok I missed the highlight, a new poem by the amiable Roger McGough. We could have another competition to predict the lines that will be used in the poem. or lines that won't appear in the poem Ha ha!

Correspondent said...

I suppose it's just as well for the council that Roger McGough would be hard put to find something that rhymes with Jason Harborrow. Still, nice to see there will be some sort of "Liverpool singalong" by the Mersey to mark the end of culture year...on January 10, 2009. Is it possible to get the two Maccas, McGough & McCartney, together for a special song with the working title, "Better Late Than Never"?

How the council use Ripa to spy on you....

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