That STV program about Edinburgh Council statutory notice shennanigans?

Home Forum Chat Forum That STV program about Edinburgh Council statutory notice shennanigans?

Viewing 22 posts - 1 through 22 (of 22 total)
  • That STV program about Edinburgh Council statutory notice shennanigans?
  • Anyone point me in the direction of a link where I could watch it again?
    Currently unable to sell our flat because statutory notice work carried out on our behalf by the caring souls at Edinburgh council is under police investigation.

    Original estimate prior to work beginning: £12,000
    Latest estimate: £370,000

    Very little difference in work estimated and work carried out (clearing guttering and re-facing chimney stack). SNs were served in 2005, work completed in 2008 after 21 months of scaffolding, and this has been dragging on since then.

    Would just like to see if there’s any info in the program we could use.

    Zedsdead
    Member

    370,000 – that’s impressive even for the bumbling cretons at edinburgh cooncil.

    Are they making you pay for a stretch of the tram line as well per chance?

    Well they have to pay for it somehow…

    Premier Icon Stoner
    Subscriber

    TJ’s your man for this. I gather he’s on facebook. See if you can track him down.

    Cheers. I shall try some sleuthing…

    CountZero
    Member

    That’s interesting; a while back I read a post on a blog by Kate Griffin, a fantasy author who lives in London. She was ranting about maintenance costs imposed on residents in the flats where she lives, which seem way over the top.
    Here’s her post:

    Aaaaaaaahhhh!
    London
    by KateG
    And I say again… aaaaahh! There’s nothing quite like getting a provisional bill for £11,700 from your local council for repair works to the council estate on which you live, to make you go…. aaaaaah!
    It’s not simply the complete lack of warning with which this documentation appeared, nor the fact that in a single side of A4 the council politely but firmly explains that the cost of redecorating the stairwell, re-fencing (the fences are fine!) and maintaining the roof, split across the block, equals a bill of £11,700 per household minimum… it’s the fact that legally speaking, they’ve got us all by the nuts. Not only is the council my landlord, but there’s even a fiendish clause in their contract whereby, if I attempt to move out now, they still demand the cash from me for these works. Making moving out really, really dumb, if not borderline impossible until the works are completed. And more – MORE – every year I pay over £750 in a ‘service charge’ to my council to maintain the estate, and what do I get in return? A statement pointing out that £250 of my service charge is spent on ‘managing the service charge’.
    However, if you still aren’t reeling enough from getting a bill that represents a huge sod-off burden on your life, sanity and happiness, the council charitably suggests that for a mere £200 now and an unspecified ‘legal fee’ later, you might get away with spreading your bill over a few years, instead of the 14 days you have to pay upon completion of works. They even attach a helpful ‘FAQ’ page of double-sided A4, within which you may be happy to find that the answer to Q.3 ‘The costs appear to be high, how do you justify the high costs?’ is this:
    ‘Contracts are awarded on a competitive basis, with tenders assessed by a panel on the basis of cost and quality. [My local] Council demands high quality of work and is duty bound to comply with Health & Safety requirements. Therefore a sufficient number of site managers and Resident Liaison Officers are required to achieve this, and there is a cost involved. There are off site costs which may not be visible on site but are attributable to the running of the project e.g. feasibility surveys, drawing up plans/specifications of works, planning costs, consultation etc.. On site costs may include, statuary welfare provisions (WCs, washrooms etc), office accommodation and equipment (telephone, fax, computers etc), management staff salaries, this includes the Resident Liaison Officers and Site Managers etc.’
    Or to put it another way…
    Cost of repairs – £500. Cost of installing toilets, buying a fax, talking about it lots and having middle-management walk around in a hard hat looking exasperated – £10,500.
    Aaaaaaaahhhhh!!!

    I wonder if this might be similar behaviour, in which case, is there grounds for similar investigation.
    It does seem iniquitous that residents pay a premium each year to cover maintenance costs, then get a bill to cover maintenance costs that most residents will never have the savings to pay.

    Oh, there’s been an investigation alright. One that says that – despite naming specific council employees as having accepted hospitality in the form of trips to strip clubs, plus the use of contractors’ equipment for free, and buying consumables for personal use via contractors’ accounts, thus taking advantage of trade prices unavailable to the general public while at the same time removing any objectivity when it came to awarding repair contracts – despite all that, no-one is to be charged with any offence. And what’s more, Edinburgh Council refuse to release the report arising from that independent investigation, all of which was paid for with more than £1.5 million of public money.

    Oh, there’s been an investigation alright. One that says that – despite naming specific council employees as having accepted hospitality in the form of trips to strip clubs, plus the use of contractors’ equipment for free, and buying consumables for personal use via contractors’ accounts, thus taking advantage of trade prices unavailable to the general public while at the same time removing any objectivity when it came to awarding repair contracts – despite all that, no-one is to be charged with any offence. And what’s more, Edinburgh Council refuse to release the report arising from that independent investigation, all of which was paid for with more than £1.5 million of public money.

    DickBarton
    Member

    Your repeating yourself again…

    DickBarton
    Member

    Joking aside, can you submit an FOI request (Freedom of Information) to see all papers pertaining to this investigation…including any notes and ask for copies of the originals rather than typed out copies of them.

    big_n_daft
    Member

    +1 for FOI

    I would also ask for details of how the charges are calculated and then take any “overhead” to the your equivilent of the local government ombudsmen

    there is also probably a OFT investigation lurking in the facts of the case

    as it council, obviously your local councillor as well or his opposition depending on which side of the fence they fall on

    Council have refused every FOI request so far, citing that it pertains to things that have been subject to police investigation. They’ve released a heavily redacted version, but it tells you 3/4 of bugger-all about anything that’s gone on.

    stuartie_c
    Member

    I presume it has been escalated to the FoI Commissioner for Scotland?

    http://www.itspublicknowledge.info/home/AboutSIC/AboutCommissioner.asp

    DickBarton
    Member

    Keep pushing the FOI route and also see if you can get anything from the police…try the papers and the councillor s…

    Premier Icon white101
    Subscriber

    Ox, you have my sympathy mate, sounds like a shocking situation and at the same time a storyline from a Rankin Rebus book.
    The level of incompetence and corruption in local councils seems to know no bounds, I wonder if we will ever have an expose of this on the same scale as the MP’s expenses?

    Zedsdead
    Member

    I thought I had read that there was to be no further action.

    Not only is it shocking, it’s an absolute disgrace! There is clearly something to hide here. Everyone already suspects Edinburgh council of being corrupt – this only reinforces this.

    It’s all rather sad really.

    Premier Icon irc
    Subscriber

    Surely no charges/no further action means the police investigation is complete so that excuse no longer applies to a fresh FOI?

    MicArms
    Member

    I’d also send this info onwards to private eye magazine. Good story for them to rip into.

    CaptJon
    Member

    Just wait until you get the bill for your share of the tram system…

    b r
    Member

    What percentage mortgage have you, as in, is it the Bank’s problem?

    The £370k, is it each or across a number of properties?

    This one:

    http://local.stv.tv/edinburgh/25148-edinburgh-statutory-notice-meeting-identifies-eh7-as-worst-hit-postcode/

    This chap looks the one to talk with:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gordon_Murdie

    To use a local term – hawd oan a meenit…

    Very little difference in work estimated and work carried out (clearing guttering and re-facing chimney stack). SNs were served in 2005, work completed in 2008 after 21 months of scaffolding, and this has been dragging on since then.

    Why would anyone take 21 months to clear guttering and reface a chimney?

    Premier Icon bigjim
    Subscriber

    If you watch the program you’ll see most of the documents received through FOI have thick black marker pen over most of the text, amazing.

    Jeremy was mentioned on that program! I can set you up on a date with him if you like.

Viewing 22 posts - 1 through 22 (of 22 total)

The topic ‘That STV program about Edinburgh Council statutory notice shennanigans?’ is closed to new replies.