Author Topic: 2. The 'Delegated Decision' To Lend Digital City (UK) Ltd £450,000  (Read 3626 times)

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Offline komadori

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Admin edit: Post Split from the WiFi Enquiry 'Business Case' Thread

Dougal




We seem to be straying off the topic of the business case, but…

As the council has an annual budget of about £130M, I wouldn't describe a decision to invest just under £½M as a 'large financial decision' and looking at the budget proposals for next year I don't see mention of anything less than £½M. In council budget terms, this is a relatively small financial decision. However, the chain of delegated authority for such decisions has criteria that are not purely financial.

Geoff has earlier referred to cabinet minute 28 of the 23rd July 2008, allowing two directors in consultation with the Cabinet member for Resources to make decisions to invest in joint ventures. However, every cabinet member's delegated authority is itself constrained, by the council's constitution.

Quote
To speed-up decision making and to allow the Cabinet to concentrate on major matters, Cabinet Members have the delegated power to make day-to-day decisions in relation to the areas within their portfolio. Councillors and officers operate in accordance with various agreed procedures and protocols as set out in Part 5 of this Constitution.
So cabinet members have delegated authority for 'day-to-day decisions', but not for 'major matters'. This 'investment' was launched in a blaze of publicity. How many 'day-to-day decisions' are accompanied by press releases and a launch graced with the presence of a member of the parliamentary shadow cabinet?

Even if small financially, politically this seems to have been planned as something major.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2010, 04:54:06 PM by Dougal »


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Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: 2. The 'Delegated Decision' To Lend Digital City (UK) Ltd £450,000
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2010, 05:02:02 PM »
 
A good point to begin examining and discussing 'Delegated Decisions' and in particular the one made by Councillor Mark Edwards as lead member for finance.

My initial questions are:

1. Did he exceed his authority when he made this particular delegated decision?

2. Can Councillor Edwards' decision to loan Digital City (UK) Ltd and SBC to take a 40% share in the company be described as a 'day-to-day-matter' ?

3. Is the WiFi deal a 'Major Matter' which the entire cabinet should have been involved with?

If the answers are yes, no and yes.... we should be seriously concerned.


(No public gallery required for this I think?)

Offline Steve Wakefield

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Re: 2. The 'Delegated Decision' To Lend Digital City (UK) Ltd £450,000
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2010, 05:05:44 PM »
Well the Cllr Mark Edwards Cabinet Budget Proposals, Dial a ride decision for a 50K slash was burned by the majority of back benchers, but then that is I suppose democracy in action for you :clap:
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Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: 2. The 'Delegated Decision' To Lend Digital City (UK) Ltd £450,000
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2010, 05:08:41 PM »
Well the Dial a ride decision was for a 50K slash was burned by the majority of back benchers, but that is democracy in action for you :clap:

You may need to explain this, (I didn't follow the dial-a-ride debacle very closely), was that another delegated decision? and/or is there a strong connection between £50k being grabbed from Dial-A-Ride and where the £450,000 for the Digital City Loan was sourced?

 

Offline komadori

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Re: 2. The 'Delegated Decision' To Lend Digital City (UK) Ltd £450,000
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2010, 05:17:09 PM »
The Dial-a-ride decision was not a decision delegated to couple of cabinet members: it was part of the annual budget proposals and as such publicised as part of the draft budget.

My initial questions are:

1. Did he exceed his authority when he made this particular delegated decision?

2. Can Councillor Edwards' decision to loan Digital City (UK) Ltd and SBC to take a 40% share in the company be described as a 'day-to-day-matter' ?

3. Is the WiFi deal a 'Major Matter' which the entire cabinet should have been involved with?
I think there is an additional question which is 'Is the delegated authority to make investment decisions independent of the 'day-to-day decision' delegated authority?'
If the answer to that is yes then it does not matter whether or not it was a major matter.
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