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‘YOU WANT PUBLIC INTEREST INFORMATION? PAY FOR IT!’ STATES SALFORD CITY COUNCIL
 

Star date: 29th October 2018

SHOCKING, ARROGANT LACK OF TRANSPARENCY AT SALFORD COUNCIL

Unbelievably, today Salford City Council has posted a report about its purchase of arches in Chapel Street for which it is refusing to disclose information. Instead the report tells citizens to pay for the information... It will be "publicly available for a modest fee" states the Council.

Full details here...


Salford Council 'Transparency' banner Salford Council disclosure notice
click image to enlarge

Today, Salford City Council has posted a report on its website about the imminent purchase of the "long leasehold interest" in Arches 1-6 on Chapel Street.

It seems that the Council is about to buy them to, as it states, "secure an increased level of control over a key property and influence its use to align with the wider masterplan for the Greengate area".

The Council has to buy the buildings before 6th November or they will be put on the open market but it's refusing to disclose how much it's paying or any other details, even after the sale has gone through.

The checklist of reasons why the information is exempt from disclosure concludes that "Disclosure of details of the proposed transaction is likely to be detrimental to
the financial interests of the Council, any existing occupational tenants of the
property and the management thereof".

It adds that "The main details of the transaction, excluding financial information, will be available following completion as it will be recorded at the Land Registry and
publicly available for a modest fee..."

In other words, 'If you want to know what your City Council is doing with your money, you have to pay for it'.

While the 'modest fee' at the Land Registry is only around £3, it's the principal that matters. Citizens are expected to register with the Land Registry, find the exact postcode and then pay up for information that should be publicly available. And even then, the 'financial information', or how much the Council has coughed up for the arches, may be 'excluded'.

It's noticeable that the ridiculous 'Transparency' banner that adorned the Civic Centre has now been taken down...


For a full background see previous Salford Star articles...

Disgraceful Salford Council Takes Five Months To Release Information – click here

Salford Council Wins Joe Stalin Award For Open and Democratic Government – click here

Salford Council Banner Declares 'Transparency' Despite Everything Being Secret – click here

Secrecy Reigns at Salford Council Over Future of Swinton, Pendleton, Charlestown, Lower Broughton and Ordsall – click here

pgj wrote
at 11:03:10 on 02 November 2018
Bob the regular, you are the epitome of a " tap room lawyer". You state "what we need is someone" and then go on to tell us exactly how the process will progress. Why do we "need someone"? You seem so well informed (about everything it seems) that I ask myself, why not you. Your comments on every article are, quite frankly, laughable. You come across as a know nothing know all.
 
wrote
at 05:10:04 on 02 November 2018
The comment section’s starting to get cancerous again. If you think hiding this info is democratic, transparent and just in place to stop the Star from nicking it (LOL!!!), then you better join David ‘Batshit crazy’ Ike, because your comments and claims are, quite literally, laughable.
 
Bob the regular wrote
at 05:09:49 on 02 November 2018
The easy way to get over this £3 thing is this, judicial revue. What we need is someone to ask for this information. It would be nice at this time to tell the clowns that you will take it to jr as a matter of principal if they do not comply. if they give info fine. If they do not, go to appeal. If appeal people refuse , go for jr.(at appeal ask for oral revue that way they have to turn up) you will get free court fee and jr forms are easy to fill in. If you are successful you can ask the court to give you £20 per each hour you spent on the case.Hopefully you will loose the jr. that means you can go to court of appeal, next stop supreme court, again free. This will make steam come from the mayors arse,as these knobs will have to pay out for these public school barristers. These Tory type toffs know mugs when they see them. The point in question is a valid legal one. Should the council be able to make you pay for information that they should give freely? Whenever I am dealing with government knobs I always ask to see the local boss and threaten JR. The shop floor wallahs have not got a clue about this , but the managers have. It is amazing how quick common sense comes to the surface when you mention JR.Tell em you got a mate who is a law student who will show you how to do it.
 
Salford Star wrote
at 16:01:40 on 01 November 2018
See Arnold Rimmer's comment below...What planet are you on? First up, the Salford Star was always free and always will be (people outside Salford could subscribe for the cost of the postage of the print mag). Secondly, this Council info is public information that should be available to everyone not via payment. PS The mainstream media is adept at nicking articles and contacts all the time from the Star website with no payments involved.
 
Arnold Rimmer wrote
at 15:56:48 on 01 November 2018
I'm pretty sure if the Star was a paid subscription magazine, they'd not like it if i just copy and pasted their articles onto my own website for free. This is exactly why the FoI exemption exists.
 
Rossi speaks wrote
at 23:04:41 on 31 October 2018
Member of the Asylum, I am on JSA. I get £73 to live on every week. In a nation of about forty million people paying income tax, I wonder how much you personally contribute to my $eventy three notes? I'm gambling that you personally, give me about one thoussndth of a penny. Thanks mate, I really appreciate your generosity.
 
member of the asylum wrote
at 15:28:09 on 31 October 2018
why doesnt one person pay the £3 and get the information and put it on here. BOOM SORTED and as fir the comment WE PAY THEIR WAGES. Yes only if your working. If you are not WE PAY YOUR MONEY.
 
Bob the regular wrote
at 06:05:31 on 31 October 2018
I am sure the editor of this journal laughed his arse off to hear his work being described as a Tory driven rag. Tell you what, lets all vote Tory the next few council elections and get a Tory council. I do not think they would balls things up as Labour do, they are much more competant, but there meaness would enrage those who write the stories we read here. We live in an area that is traditionaly Labour, and if we had a council that was, traditionaly Labour ,honest and accountable, and did the right thing towards its people, then perhaps this journal could write stories about 100 year old ladies birthday parties and that sort of thing that the MEN write. The Labour lot we have here, supposed to be very left, but do things that are just bonkers. A free press is essential, and even for all its ills, the one in America is much more free than ours is.
 
wrote
at 22:38:46 on 30 October 2018
Marc “Student rag? I disagree, it comes across as more of a right wing Tory driven rag that hates the Labour Party and it wonders why it doesn’t get council support.” So the Star should only write nice things about Salford Labour and the Council just so they’ll throw some funding and replies their way? That’s not a free press, that’s government controlling the media. Have you read what the MEN, their own laughable joke of a mag ‘Limelight’ and other outlets write about the Council? It’s nearly all positive, when the reality is anything but. In ‘Limelight’ for example the mag basically said they secured X amount of fees from developers, completely omitting the money they DIDN’T get but were owed. I’ve never seen the MEN or any other news orgs point that out, I wonder why?
 
Bob the regular wrote
at 18:33:47 on 30 October 2018
The land registry makes most of its cash from registration fees.The fees you pay when you buy your house are the bread and butter of the land registry. These £3 fees that nosey people like me pay to find out who owns what are just extra cash for them. The companies house registry , which is a similar government agency does not charge. As I understand it the info on both sites is not copyright and can be quoted. The company house website is easy, user friendly for computer numbties like me. The land registry one is tricky and I always make a balls of it, otherwise I would do it and publish here.
 
Marc wrote
at 16:20:37 on 30 October 2018
Student rag? I disagree, it comes across as more of a right wing Tory driven rag that hates the Labour Party and it wonders why it doesn’t get council support. Pay the £3 if you are so desperate for the information and stop putting ridiculous requests to the council which ALL cost money to pay to reply! That’s my council tax being spent on ridiculous FOI requests that the vast majority of council tax payers in Salford aren’t interested in. The amount of people that put down Salford on this site isn’t ridiculous, bunch of keyboard warriors who have nothing better to do or say. And before the trolls come and call me a council worker or writing on behalf of Labour, i am neither, just someone who comes on here to find good news stories, and am constantly disappointed with the amount of drivel.
 
wrote
at 12:59:56 on 30 October 2018
Well Gravytrain-they could just be open about it and give the information to the people they are supposed to represent and who pay their wages. They are arrogant and are more or less saying "We aren't not giving you the information, we are just not giving it to you", which is terrible grammar, but the gist is that the information is out there but you are going to have to pay for it becasue we will not release it.
 
Ben Snith wrote
at 12:59:45 on 30 October 2018
Arnold Rimmer Yes I read the article . What I find appalling is the usual dismissive arrogant and ignorant attitude the clowncil Mafia have towards the inmates of Asylum Salford . It's not about £3 It's about the high handed attitude of a gang of incompetents.
 
Salford Star wrote
at 08:40:01 on 30 October 2018
See Gravy Train's comment below...No it's not 'clickbait' it's public interest. Last time the Council ruled that the Salford Star had to pay for similar information, the Information Commissioner ruled in our favour. This latest stance totally goes against transparency and open local government. It's not a 'smear', it's about principles and attitude towards its own citizens.
 
Gravytrain wrote
at 08:35:44 on 30 October 2018
@arnold..spot on. This is just more clickbate in what comes across as a student rag. It would cost Salford council more than £3 to get someone to reply to this whinging report. I’d rather see them doing real work than wasting time responding to a smear campaign like this.
 
Arnold Rimmer wrote
at 06:25:47 on 30 October 2018
@Ben. They have nothing to hide, they literally said where to get the into from. Didn't you read the article? The land registry is only funded by these £3 information requests which is why everyone not just Salford denies property/land questions under foi as they are exempt. Send an foi request to the land registry and they'll tell you to buy the info.
 
Ben Snith wrote
at 19:02:49 on 29 October 2018
What have this bent clowncil got to hide ? Sort it out Dennett.
 
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