City of York Council’s Statement of Accounts

City of York Council will open its accounts for public inspection from Monday 27 July to Monday 24 August between 8.30am and 5pm daily.

The annual inspection gives members of the public and local government electors certain rights in the audit process.

Any person may inspect the accounts of the council for the year ended 31 March 2015 and certain related documents (comprising books, deeds, contracts, bills, vouchers and receipts) at West Offices. They may also make copies of the accounts and documents.

The council’s accounts are subject to external audit by Mazars LLP.

Following this period of public inspection residents can, from 24 August, question the auditor about, or make objections to, the accounts before they are signed off by Audit & Governance Committee on the 23 September 2015.

Labour lose some influence on Council – alternative approach proving illusive

As expected, the balance of power on many York Council committees swung away from Labour at a York Council meeting this evening.Lendal bridge notice

As required by law, the membership of scrutiny, planning and other committees will reflect the proportion of the seats held by the different parties on the Council.

The chairs of scrutiny committees will be taken by opposition Councillors.

Amongst the appointments, Andrew Waller will chair a committee that deals with Economic and City Development, Ann Reid will chair the Planning Committee and Nigel Ayre will head the influential Audit and Governance Committee.

But the key Cabinet posts will all continue to be held by Labour.

Opposition Councillors will need to work hard to hold to account a group which has failed on so many tasks over the last 3 years.

York needs a transparent, inclusive,  system which can address the many problems which have increasingly dogged York in recent months.

Time is running out.


Narrow vote, but £70,000 “non job” gets York Council “go ahead”

Labour Councillors today voted through (by 3 votes to 2) the appointment of a new £70,000 a year “Interim Assistant Director Transformation and Change

You did waht

The post has been described as a “non-job” with vague objectives

A variety of questions were asked by opposition Councillors, including why just an internal advert, about the pool of people who could apply, about constituency of recruitment across the council and why if they could save money from a Children’s Services post did they need even more than the £500k set aside for transformation.

The post will be recruited internally. Only existing Council staff will be able to apply.

Two other posts are also to be advertised. An Assistant Directors for School Improvement and Highways/Waste will be advertised externally.

Unlike other Council meetings this committee’s debates are neither transmitted over the web.

Nor is an audio recording made available for residents.

Apparently some agricultural language was used by one of the participants.

Labour add £1 million to York’s annual debt repayment levels in just 24 months

The Council has admitted that increased borrowing means that Council taxpayers are now paying £1m a year more in debt charges than in 2011.

Kings Square work

Kings Square work

Most has been used to bolster what the Council describes as its Economic Development Fund.

£18 million has been committed to this fund already which is being used to pay for projects such as:

• Refurbishment of Kings Square

• Acquisition of an “Arts Barge”

• Tour de France start

• Newgate market refurbishment

• New City centre bus stops

Of the annual additional payments around £0.5 million goes on interest charges while £0.5 makes staged repayments of the principal.

It will take over 20 years to fully repay the borrowing

York traffic signal reliability questioned

The seemingly endless series of faults on York’s traffic lights and signalised pedestrian crossings will be questioned at the Council meeting on 10th October.

London solution

London solution

Residents were particularly concerned when the pelican crossing on Front Street was faulty for several days last week.

The Council has not published any reliability statistics on traffic lights for over 2 years.

The response time targets for the Council’s maintenance contractor have also not been published

Cllr Ann Reid will ask the transport chief

“How many faults have been reported on traffic signals in York so far this year and what is the total time that signals have been out of service? How does this compare to the equivalent period last year?”
NB. The continued unavailability of traffic camera real time information on the Councils web site will also be highlighted at the meeting.

It is 6 months since the Council opened its new £300,000 CCTV control centre and put traffic camera icons on its web based congestion map.

In July the Council accepted that the move had been premature although the North Yorkshire Council has had similar camera access available for many years. Assurances were given that the links would go live shortly.

3 months later and the links still aren’t working.

Liberal Democrat Councillors have therefore tabled a question asking, “Why is the feed from the traffic cameras to the “itravel” York web site map still not working despite the assurances given at the July Council meeting? “

A list of all the questions submitted for the meeting can be read here: