Home ... Tag Archives: FOI

Tag Archives: FOI

Police ‘abused power’ by spying on fracking debate

Kent Police has been accused of an “abuse of power” following allegations it planted plainclothes officers in the audience of a fracking debate at Canterbury Christ Church University. It emerged this week that a chief inspector requested two officers monitor the meeting, which took place on November 19, following concerns over the attendance of a prominent Green Party activist. The …

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Sandy sure is guilty

A unanimous verdict on all counts. Cue lots of tutting, head-shaking and eye-rolling across Thanet and east Kent. Cue many changes of underwear at TDC, as the police widen their enquiries… Former Conservative Thanet council leader Sandy Ezekiel has been found guilty of four counts of misconduct in public office. Ezekiel, 59, has been on trial at Maidstone Crown Court …

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Council throws good money at bad airport

KCC + KLM + KIA = WTF Getting a straight answer out of KCC is hard at the best of times – even with the legal leverage of the Freedom of Information Act it can take months. But it’s usually worth the wait, and the dogged persistence is rewarded. And let’s not forget, anything that’s released under the FoI Act …

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Why Steer Davies Gleave?

This is from the internal KCC document that describes how the contract (to produce the supporting report for the £10m RGF bid) was awarded.


Outline of Project

Although KCC has previously carried out some outline feasibility work for the proposed Thanet Parkway station (most recently in July 2009), this requires significant updating and development; including more comprehensive passenger demand forecasting and a full feasibility design of the station and car park, if a robust and credible RGF bid is to be prepared. The Government is particularly interested in the job creation potential (both direct and indirect) of proposed schemes, which has not previously been a requirement of traditional transport appraisals. For these reasons, and in light of the challenging timescale for the submission of a first-round RGF bid, it was agreed with the Director of Integrated Strategy and Planning that KCC should invite three technical consultants to tender for this work.

Reasons for appointing this particular Consultant:

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Manston unmonitored

Like getting blood from a stone, corpuscles from concrete, plasma from paving stones... you get the picture. It can be frustrating for information vampires, thirsting after a few drops of information from TDC. But patience and persistence is rewarded:

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Council reveals unsuccessful bid to develop Manston services

It's like pulling teeth

Kent County Council has been forced to reveal details of its unsuccessful £10.8 million bid for Government money to develop services for Manston airport.  Campaigners, No Night Flights, challenged KCC's refusal to release details of the Regional Growth Fund (RGF) application.

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A closer look at that bid

The once-secret KCC funding bid

Bureaucracy being what it is, KCC and Infratil were obliged to spell out in detail the brazen cheek of their cash plea. Do please remember that Infratil is a New Zealand-based investment company, and that whatever profits it can (finally) squeeze out of this lemon of an airport will be going straight back to their antipodean investors, still smarting from years of multi-million pound losses.

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Yet another job forecast

From the once-secret KCC funding bid

What a wondrous thing is the Freedom of Information Act. Without it, we wouldn't know what KCC had said to the money-bags at BIS in their plea for free money. They have repeatedly tried to dodge FOI requests, until finally cornered by our tireless truth-seekers.

It will come as no surprise to the more cynical of our international readership that it's not just the tone and emphasis of what KCC and Infratil say in their bid that differs from what they've been saying publicly, it's the numbers too.

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KCC’s empty begging bowl

In the middle of last year, the Government (in the form of the Department for Business Innovation and Skills - BIS) launched the Regional Growth Fund (RGF). The RGF aims to "support projects and programmes that lever private sector investment creating economic growth and sustainable employment. It aims particularly to help those areas and communities currently dependent on the public sector to make the transition to sustainable private sector-led growth and prosperity".

Across the length and breadth of our proud nation, there was a cacophony of snorts and oinks as snouts were pressed to the trough, greedy for their share of the £1.4 billion on offer. KCC was there, looking for a handout to support their crackpot proposal for a Parkway station at Manston, and some free money for the airport. Here's why they failed:

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