Croydon’s Executive Mayor Jason Perry has written to the Secretary of State Michael Gove asking him to urgently review councils’ powers to hold individuals to account after they have left the organisation.
This follows Croydon’s unanimous, cross-party committee decision to take unprecedented action against former officers and members for the catastrophic failures in governance that led to the council’s financial collapse.
Last month Croydon announced it would be referring a suite of reports into what happened at the council to the police for them to investigate; referring former officers to public bodies that operate a code of conduct and taking action to recover as much as is legally possible of the former chief executive’s settlement payment.
Mayor Perry has expressed frustration with the limited powers of redress once officers and members have left office, and pledged to lobby the government for councils to have more powers to hold them to account– read his letter in full here.
“Croydon’s experience has highlighted the limited powers local councils have to hold individuals to account for misconduct in office.
“People in Croydon are angry that a handful of individuals that have failed our council through poor and reckless decision-making have been allowed to walk away whilst residents pay the price.
“We are taking as much action as possible to set things right and to make sure failing officers and members are held to account.
“That is why we are taking unprecedented action to ask the Secretary of State to see what else can be done to protect residents and make sure individuals in public office bear the full responsibility for their actions.
“What has happened in Croydon cannot be allowed to happen again at any other local authority.”
Jason Perry, Executive Mayor of Croydon