Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Councillors, the gifts register and free Reading Festival tickets

The Council runs a register of gifts for councillors and staff. When you receive a gift from a member of the public over the value of £20 then you should declare the gift on the register.

Unfortunately, the register isn't accessible as a whole online, but you can access each councillor's individual declaration of interests, which are updated individually with the gifts received. Here are the interests of my ward colleagues Councillor Hartley and Councillor Hussain.

To link this back to a campaign I was running a little while ago, I was questioning the practice of all Reading councillors being offered two free Reading Festival tickets worth approximately £360. Rather than checking each councillor's individual declaration of interests I recently asked to see the register of interests -- I think any member of the public can do this -- to see who had taken up the offer of free Festival tickets. The list can be found here.

Interestingly though Councillor Hartley is on the list as having accepted tickets, but his declaration of interests hasn't been updated -- although it was for other tickets in both 2008 and 2009?

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