Category Archives: Bundred Report

WHISTLEBLOWING WATCH

Lies, bullshit and waffle emanated from the Reverend Rees within minutes of his ‘Bundred Report’ into the council’s finances being published on 9 February. Former Audit Commission boss, Steve ‘Sticky’ Bundred, provided the Reverend with TWELVE recommendations he could implement to improve his council’s shit management.

Here’s number 8: “The incoming chief executive should be invited to consider and report on the steps needed to improve the management culture within the Council recognising that any necessary changes will take three to five years to embed. There should be an emphasis on greater openness, professionalism, delegation, mutual respect and better internal communication, but with fewer large and lengthy meetings.”

The Rev Arsecover immediately responded: “quick improvements include a recent update to our WHISTLEBLOWING POLICY to make it easier for staff to flag up concerns,” he blathered. However, a brief search on the council’s website turns up a Whistleblowing Policy last updated on 2 JUNE 2016 because “[the] scope [was] widened to include employees of LA maintained schools”.

Is last July RECENT? And how the fuck does including school staff “make it easier for staff to flag up concerns”? Is this even the recently updated version the Reverend’s referring to? Does it exist? And, if it does, how the hell is it easier for concerns to be flagged up if no one can access the bloody thing?

A further search also reveals the Rev’s new all-singing, all-dancing whistleblowing policy has been NOWHERE near a council committee or an elected representative in the last year, let alone out for public consultation or run past a trade union rep or employment lawyer who might have a few things to say.

All-in-all, the chances of this mystery document – drawn up in secret by unknown officers beyond public and democratic oversight – being fit-for-purpose must be somewhere near ZERO. But then that’s the point with whistleblowing isn’t it? Council bosses hate it and want it to fail and politicians go along with them.

How long before the Reverend has to call a large and lengthy meeting to sort this new mess from his managers out then?

AUDIT UPDATE: BUNDRED EXPOSES BENT CHIEF AUDITORS

We don’t like to say that we told you so, but … We told you so! That staggering pair of arseholes, Alison “Mullet” Mullis and Melanie “Joe” Henchy-McCarthy, Bristol City Council’s Chief Internal Auditors – who are supposed to protect our money at the council – have been EXPOSED as BENT and USELESS by the council’s ‘Bundred Report’ into its dodgy finance reporting.

According to independent investigator Steve “Sticky” Bundred, the pair of idiot auditors gave the basketcase ‘Single Change Programme’ – that was supposed to deliver £64 million worth of corporate savings to the council by March 2017 and didn’t  – a clean bill of health and a ‘GOOD‘ rating in July 2015. Although it was plainly apparent, even then, to anyone allowed to look that it wasn’t delivering the savings that it should.

While the two auditors researched their report in the summer of 2015, Sticky Bundred tells us that the man in charge of the savings, strategic director Max Wide “Boy”, had “developed SERIOUS DOUBTS about the achievability of the planned savings …   as [his] Directorate was clearly failing to deliver savings expected from investment in commercial property.”

Bundred also says, “These CONCERNS were apparently expressed by [Wide Boy] to the then City Director [Nicola “Lady Gaga” Yates] in a one to one meeting on 13 July 2015 and again in a presentation to an SLT (senior leadership team) awayday.”

Bundred further notes, “on 11 June 2015 the Service Director, HR [Richard Billingham] and the Service Director, Business Change and ICT  [Paul “Arrogant” Arrigoni] met with the then City Director [Gaga] and the Strategic Director, Business Change [Wide Boy] to express concerns that benefits from the Change Programme were “DRIFTING“.”

So how did these two audit experts and super-sleuths employed by us to protect our money miss these OBVIOUS signs of a big problem in a programme they were investigating and manage to rate it as ‘GOOD‘ to councillors on the Audit Committee instead? Who knows? Because the Reverend Rees, so far, can’t be arsed to find out and neither can his Audit Committee.

Our intrepid auditors then went on to do a further investigation, specifically into the financial benefits of the ‘Single Change Programme’ in August 2015. Their draft report was issued to Wide Boy and his Single Change managers in November 2015. This draft report correctly identified cost reductions through a high-profile redundancy scheme in 2014 had NOT BEEN ACHIEVED.

Sticky Bundred explains, “Auditors believed posts were being deleted that had been vacant for a long time so there was NO ACTUAL SAVING and when actual people were released they were often replaced by interims/contractors or casual staff. In consequence, the draft [auditors] report identified RED RISKS in several areas.”

However, by November 2015, says Sticky, the Chief Internal Auditors had allowed the bosses in charge of the underachieving ‘Single Change Programme’ [Wide Boy, Arrogant and the Change Services Manager] to REWRITE their report for them!

The honest pair of auditors then proceeded to tell councillors on the Audit Committee in January 2016 via a ‘summary’ of their full report  that the Single Change Programme was operating at an ‘ACCEPTABLE‘ level without a ‘Red Risk’ in sight! When in fact it was FAILING to the tune of £29 million as all the bosses and both Chief Internal Auditors knew perfectly well.

This is straightforward LYING to our elected representatives. Why the fuck are this pair of bent audit bosses still in post and not at the Job Centre or, even, in a police cell?

THE DIRTY THIRTY: REVEALED

THIRTY Bristol City Council bosses – all members of the ‘Change Board’, responsible for overseeing a council-wide cuts programme – deliberately withheld from councillors and the public a £30 million LOSS in the 2016 – 17 financial year.

Their actions – at the very least – are GROSS MISCONDUCT and they should all be SACKED. Not least because while they were keeping their huge financial loss from us, they were also engineering pay rises for themselves of up to TWENTY PER CENT on the basis of their exceptional ‘TALENT‘!

They may also have committed a CRIME. In what other line of work can you deliberately engage in false accounting and not have committed a serious offence?

Today we name these thirty shameless CROOKS still earning huge sums of money at our expense. And The BRISTOLIAN says THEY MUST ALL GO and GO NOW.

Membership of the change board, December 2015:

Nicola Yates
City Director

Max Wide
Strategic Director: Business Change

Alison Comley
Strategic Director: Neighbourhoods

John Readman
Strategic Director: People

Barra Mac Ruairi
Strategic Director: Place

Lucy Murray-Brown
BWP Programme Co-Director

Becky Pollard
Director of Public Health

Stephen Hilton
Service Director: Bristol Futures

Paul Arrigoni
Service Director: Business Change & ICT

Angela Clarke (Interim)
Service Director: Care & Support Children & Families

Mike Hennessey
Service Director: Care Support & Provider Services (Statutory Director of Adult Social Services) Adults

Patsy Mellor
Service Director: Citizen Services

Gillian Douglas (Interim)
Service Director: Clean and Green

Alistair Reid
Service Director: Economy

Paul Jacobs
Service Director: Education & Skills

Bill Edrich
Service Director: Energy

Julie Oldland (interim)
Service Director: Finance

Mary Ryan / Steve Barrett (job share)
Service Director: Housing Delivery

Nick Hooper
Service Director: Housing Solutions

Richard Billingham
Service Director: Human Resources

Shahzia Daya
Service Director: Legal and Democratic Services

Di Robinson
Service Director: Neighbourhoods

Zoe Willcox
Service Director: Planning

Michele Farmer
Service Director: Policy, Strategy & Communications

Robert Orrett
Service Director: Property

Netta Meadows
Service Director: Strategic Commissioning

Peter Mann
Service Director: Transport

Alison Mullis / Melanie Henchy-McCarthy (job share)
Chief Internal Auditor

Sarah Toy
Chief Resilience Officer

Dominic Murphy
Chief Service Officer for Cities of Service Programme

Got any stories about any of the DIRTY THIRTY? Contact The BRISTOLIAN:

The Bristolian
Box ‘Gurt Shush
Hydra Bookshop
34 Old Market Street
Bristol BS2 0EZ

We consider the security of our confidential sources as very important and will never reveal your identity. However, please take sensible precautions when you contact us.

THE DIRTY THIRTY

The Bundred Report, published last month, into the council’s ‘accidental’ £30 million OVERSPEND last year revealed that the council’s 30 most senior bosses WITHHELD financial information from councillors and the public. This forced councillors to set – what the Reverend Rees has called – an “ILLEGAL BUDGET”.

The report’s author – former Audit Commission boss, Steve “Sticky” Bundred – evades any questions of CRIMINALITY in his report, however. Instead he blames “a serious collective failure of leadership” for the blatant dishonesty from city council bosses. Neatly ducking the issue of whether they have committed a CRIME. A considerably more serious matter than Sticky Bundred’s weak, anaemic and blame-free “collective failure” conclusion.

Potential criminal conduct by these managers includes an apparent effort to influence the outcome of the 2016 Mayoral Election by hiding from the electorate the true financial state of Bristol City Council under Mayor No-more Redpants in the lead-up to the election. How would news that the profligate Red Trousered Buffoon had OVERSPENT by £30m have been greeted by the electorate?

While efforts to rig the election for Redpants may have FAILED, it makes the conduct no more acceptable. All those involved earn excessive pay from the public purse and are contractually obliged to report, as a matter of course, any concerns over financial mismanagement, fraud, bribery embezzlement etc. at the council . They are all therefore – at least – guilty of GROSS MISCONDUCT.

The Reverend Rees has called for a further investigation. We say there is NO NEED. The evidence of these managers’ misconduct is in the Bundred Report. The Reverend needs to ACT. Not run another investigation, which will only let these bent bosses off the hook.

We’re not interested in any “NUREMBERG DEFENCE” from these crooks and frauds that they were “only following orders”. They’re paid to THINK and ACT, not blindly follow instructions like a herd of superannuated sheep.

To assist the Reverend in firing his bent management scum, we have started the task of identifying all 30. Our results will be published TOMORROW. Rest assured we are HUNTING DOWN and will identify any more of these crooks.

We say NO MORE INVESTIGATIONS: disciplinary action and dismissal for the Dirty Thirty now!

BUNDRED REPORT: PANIC AT THE TOP?

A sense of DISARRAY and PANIC at the top of Bristol City Council is emerging as public anger and a determined effort to rid ourselves of the THIRTY bosses who hid a £30m budget black hole from the Bristolian public and their councillors in 2016 grows by the day.

The latest tactic from Bristol City Council’s CRIMINAL gang of Strategic and Service Directors – who presented a set of bent accounts to the public just prior to thieving a 20 per cent pay rise for themselves on the basis of their ‘talent’ – is to IGNORE their correspondence and AVOID replying to Freedom of Information requests.

A recent Freedom of Information request asking that the council supply the minutes of their CHANGE BOARD – where the £30 million scam was cooked-up – has been deliberately delayed. Because, claim panicking bosses, of the “COMPLEXITY” of the request.

What a load of bollocks. Retrieving files from a computer system and supplying them to the public involves no complexity whatsoever. IT’S A SIMPLE TASK. How can a £3 million a year high talent management team not be able to complete this simple task in a month and, instead, resort to weeping about the complexity of it all?

No wonder they struggle with traffic management and house building if obtaining files off a computer is too difficult for them. They are beyond PATHETIC and useless LIARS to boot.

Meanwhile, why is Shahzia “Dim” Daya – the council’s legal boss and Monitoring Officer right at the centre of the corruption scandal – IGNORING the straightforward request published below? Why’s she so bothered about involving external auditors? What could possibly be her problem with that?

From: steven norman <>
Sent: 17 February 2017 12:04
To: shahzia.daya@bristol.gov.uk
Subject: RE: RIGGING OF 2016 LOCAL & MAYORAL ELECTION BY 30 OFFICERS

Ms Daya

Perhaps someone could confirm whether Bristol City Council will be formally requesting that their external auditors conduct a Public Interest Investigation into the following:

– the 30 senior officers/Change Board that withheld information from councillors and the S151 officer that resulted in a material misstatement in the 2015 – 16 accounts and material misstatements in the budget for 2016 – 17 agreed by Full Council in February 2016.

– The Chief Internal Auditors who, in April 2015, found the Change Programme governance arrangements to be ‘good’. A perverse conclusion entirely at odds with the Bundred Report.

– The Chief Internal Auditors over a further Internal Audit report produced in November 2015 and finally published in December 2015 – ‘Change Programme: Financial Benefits Realisation” – that reported ‘acceptable’ levels of control across all areas of the Change Programme after the report was altered by the following officers – Change Services Manager, Service Director, Business Change & ICT, and Strategic Director, Business Change.

– The Chief Internal Auditors presenting the December 2015 report above to the Audit Committee in summary form and with no indication it had been substantially rewritten by officers/managers running the failing Change Programme.

Only it appears to me that an attempt was being made to rig the election by 30 officers who knowingly withheld vital and important information from elected officials and the general public

Kindest Regards

Mr Stephen Norman

If Bristol City Council’s sleazy management scum are avoiding answering these simple questions to DELIBERATELY avoid bringing in the external auditors as they are legally required to do, then they need to quit now so some bosses can come in who are prepared to OBEY THE LAW.