Stockport Council News

Stockport Council News

Stockport Council Credit Card Spending

SMBC FOIPosted by Sheila Oliver Sun, May 31, 2015 07:45:39
http://www.stockport.gov.uk/services/councildemocracy/your_council/documentsandfacts/budgetsfinancialmonitoringreports/councilspending#pcards

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Counting of votes at Stockport

SMBC FOIPosted by Sheila Oliver Sun, May 31, 2015 07:21:11

Dear Mrs Oliver,

I am writing in response to your request for information (ref FOI 30582).

The relevant Council Service(s) has searched for the requested information and our response is as follows:

Are postal votes counted before the rest of the votes are counted on election night, and if so which individuals are privy to the number of votes cast for each party?

SMBC can confirm that postal votes are not counted by candidate/party before the close of poll on election day and so no individual is aware of the number of votes received by any candidate/party before the count takes place.

The process that is followed in respect of opening postal votes is specified in the Representation of the People (England & Wales) Regulations 2001. Essentially this provides that:

· The envelope containing the postal vote statement and the envelope containing the ballot paper(s) is opened

· The postal vote statement is checked to ensure it is signed and dated and the number on the statement matches that on the ballot paper envelope

· The signature and date of birth on the postal vote statement are scanned and the details compared to the master images kept by the Electoral Registration Officer (ERO) as part of the postal vote application process

· If the postal vote statement is accepted, the envelopes containing the ballot paper(s) then passes to the next stage of the process

· When the postal vote statements have been scanned and adjudicated, the envelopes containing the ballot paper(s) are then opened and the number of ballot papers received are counted FACE DOWNWARDS so that any candidates/agents observing the process is not able to see which candidate./party the elector has voted for. The ballot papers are not sorted into candidates/parties but the total number of ballot papers received is calculated and the ballot papers sealed into ballot boxes ready to be included in the count when it commences after the polls close.

If the signature or date of birth on the postal vote statement does not match that held by the ERO the postal vote is rejected. Any elector whose vote is rejected for these reasons is contacted after the election so they are aware their vote was disallowed and if necessary they can provide a fresh signature.

Yours sincerely,

FOI Officer

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Demolish 1840s buildings to make way for more empty office blocks in Stockport

SMBC FOIPosted by Sheila Oliver Sun, May 03, 2015 08:42:09

From: Sheila Oliver
Sent: 23 April 2015 21:29
To: FOI Officer
Subject: Compulsory purchase/demolition of property opposite town hall for construction of offices

Dear FoI Officer

I believe buildings from the 1840s opposite the town hall are being demolished in order to build more office space. The entire town is full of empty office blocks. Who came up with this proposed development and why?

Kind regards

Sheila



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Postal Voting

SMBC FOIPosted by Sheila Oliver Sun, May 03, 2015 08:40:27

From: Sheila Oliver
Sent: 26 April 2015 06:59
To: FOI Officer
Subject: Postal voting

Dear FoI Officer

Are postal votes counted before the rest of the votes are counted on election night, and if so which individuals are privy to the number of votes cast for each party?

Many thanks and kind regards

Sheila



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Compromise Agreements

SMBC FOIPosted by Sheila Oliver Tue, April 28, 2015 17:30:59


Email received - 21 May 2013 09:43
Dear Mrs Oliver,

I am writing in response to your request for information (ref FOI 7165).

The relevant Council Service(s) has searched for the requested information and our response is as follows.

Over the past two years to end of March 2013:

1) How many "compromise agreements" have been signed?

382


2) What evidence exists that employees access "independent" advice?

The signature of a solicitor on the compromise agreement and receipt of their invoice. Independent legal advice is a requirement within the compromise agreement itself.

3) Can the council guarantee that they do not provide any advice as to where employees should seek advice regarding such agreements?

We do not provide advice or recommendations. However, some employees do ask for the names of solicitors other employees have used, in which case we direct them to their own trade unions for advice and provide a list, but we are clear that this does not constitute a recommendation and they can choose whichever solicitor/legal adviser they wish, and it is their responsibility to ensure they are fully aware of what the charges will be.

4) Are redundancy payments calculated under a standard format or are there circumstances where this might be varied?

Yes they are calculated to a standard formula.

5) If so, what criteria is used to justify the variation from the norm?

Yours sincerely,

Simon Oldfield

Freedom of Information/ Data Protection Officer & RIPA Coordinator

Stockport Council
Town Hall
Stockport
SK1 3XE

Tel: 0161 474 4048
Fax: 0161 474 4006

From: Simon Oldfield On Behalf Of FOI Officer

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Sheila Oliver
Sent: 03 May 2013 19:47
To: FOI Officer
Subject: Fw: Compromise agreements 7010 - Response

Dear FoI Officer

And supplementry to my question below:-

Over the past two years to end of March 2013:

!) How many "compromise agreements" have been signed?

2) What evidence exists that employees access "independent" advice?

3) Can the council guarantee that they do not provide any advice as to where employees should seek advice regarding such agreements?

4) Are redundancy payments calculated under a standard format or are there circumstances where this might be varied?

5) If so, what criteria is used to justify the variation from the norm?

Kind regrds

Sheila

----- Original Message -----

From: Sheila Oliver

To: FOI Officer

Cc: leader@stockport.gov.uk

Sent: Friday, May 03, 2013 6:43 PM

Subject: Re: Compromise agreements 7010 - Response

Dear FoI Officer

Would the below mentioned confidentiality clause preclude whistleblowing?

By the way, £420,000 was spent on the A6 to Airport Road consultation exercise. How many of the jobs of your decent colleagues could that money have safeguarded? But it has all been blown on a doomed to failure roadscheme. And the Council says I waste money!

Kind regards

Sheila

----- Original Message -----

From: FOI Officer

To: 'Sheila Oliver'

Cc: FOI Officer

Sent: Thursday, May 02, 2013 1:58 PM

Subject: FW: Compromise agreements 7010 - Response

Dear Mrs Oliver,

I am writing in response to your request for information (ref FOI 7010).

The relevant Council Service(s) has searched for the requested information and our response is as follows.

The Council uses compromise agreements as part of our standard approach for employees leaving on voluntary redundancy grounds. Compromise agreements are signed by the employee after taking independent legal advice, and by the employer. The standard compromise agreement sets out the reason why the employee is leaving, any payments due to the employee and details the property and information that need returning to the Council as well as a standard confidentiality clause.

Yours sincerely,

Simon Oldfield

Freedom of Information/ Data Protection Officer & RIPA Coordinator

Stockport Council
Town Hall
Stockport
SK1 3XE
--------------------------------------------------------

From: Sheila Oliver
Sent: 03 April 2013 18:04
To: FOI Officer
Subject: Compromise agreements

Dear FoI Officer

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/9967901/14m-bill-for-gagging-axed-public-officials.html

Please see this newspaper article. Has SMBC signed any such agreements?

Kind regards

Sheila



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