As a follow up to our Wirral Council and Kingdom Security – Taking a Liberty story we bring you further developments as leaked emails reveal that after adverse social media coverage on here and elsewhere over last weekend there was an early Monday morning call at Liberty Antiques to visit – or should that be pacify? – Wallasey shop owner Sean Martin.
We understand Cllr Tony Jones and Cllr Pat Hackett were particularly keen to keep a lid on Mr Martin’s concerns about how Kingdom Security operate and what appears to be a punitive levy on small businesses masquerading as concerns for business waste and the local environment.
You may remember the same thing happened with complaints about the glorified rubbish dump in Cleveland Street – see our Tipping Point story – where Cllr Brian Kenny rushed out to provide some soothing words to a complainant who had come to us out of sheer frustration at Wirral Council’s indifference to his raising of concerns.
There’s a lesson to be learned here . If you want your concerns to be heard – forget about approaching a Wirral Council officer – just get what you have to say out there and get it out to as many people as you can and watch them come running…
Mr Martin writes to Cllr Tony Jones :
Further to our meeting of Monday morning I have been made aware of the Wirral Council Enforcement Policy 2014 ( Amended 2016 ) It would appear to me that the fines being issued by Kingdom are illegal for several reasons as the way they operate is the complete opposite of the written Council Policy and I feel leaves Wirral Council open to litigtion from businesses targetted and fined by these vultures. In particular I am looking at 5.2 where it states “ensure that officers register any conflicts of interest to ensure that decisions made are fair and transparent” — As the more fines Kingdom issue the more money they get then this is a clear conflict as they are motivated to fine you, not educate you. Its the same with their staff, they get bonuses the more fines they issue so they are motivated to fine you, not educate you. Also of interest is 6.1 where it states the following: In assessing what enforcement action is necessary and proportionate, consideration will be given to: The seriousness of compliance failure The past performance of a business or individual The current practice of a business or individual The risks being controlled Legal, official or professional guidance Local priorities of the Council Again they clearly do not follow this policy as they fine 100% of the people they visit without any communication. Can you please advise if this written policy is still the council’s policy. If it is can you please advise who thought they had the authority to disregard it. If it was done without agreement of the council then that persons position is untenable. Can you also advise if the people employed by the council whose job it is to enforce business waste enforcement are still employed by the council or have they been sacked or moved to other positions as obviously the council have transferred their jobs to a private company. I am concerned that the council are trying to let this run out of steam and the public anger to die down so would appreciate if you could get back to me as soon as possible I will be writing to Jeremy Corbyn, Angela Eagle, Phil Davies, Mike Cockburn and other councillors and public servants regarding this same matter. Can I put on record with you that I am disappointed that the leader of the council Mr Davies and The Strategic Commissioner for Environment Mr Cockburn have not even had the manners to acknowledge my previous letters to them. However, I have received numerous emails and messages from other residents and businesses in this area advising me that they seem to completely ignore requests for help or information from their constituents so maybe I should not be surprised. I look forward to hearing from you Kindest Regards
Cllr Tony Jones, responds to Mr Martin and Cllr Pat Hackett
I am aware Pat is pursuing this with officers so will leave it with him for the time being but thanks for the information, can I suggest any future email are sent to both of us at the same time as it just makes sense. Will be in touch (or Pat will) as soon as we have more information.
Cllr Tony Jones