26th March 2021
The letter to Council Leaders from Luke Hall MP received yesterday (25th March 2021) does not change the need for our court hearing, in fact if anything, it makes the need for it more pressing.
Councils are already actively considering the options the minister has suggested, including looking at alternative larger meeting venues at significant extra cost.
The proposal to delegate significant decisions to officers is likely to be viewed as undermining democratic accountability due to the fact that such decisions are not subject to direct member involvement. Given the circumstances authorities find themselves in due to the imminent loss of virtual meeting provision, they now face unpalatable decisions, which include restricting member attendance and a reduction in members roles in decision making, whilst attempting to keep the machinery of local government moving.
We remain fully committed to presenting our case at the High Court Hearing timetabled to be heard before the end of April 2021.
John Austin Quentin Baker
Letter to Council Leaders from Luke Hall MP – 25 March 2021