The City’s standards regime and disenfranchisement of City residents

In April 2019 a petition, signed by over 1100 City residents, went before the Court of Common Council, expressing lack of confidence in the City’s Standards regime. The wording and background information are below.

On 24 May the new chair of the Standards Committee wrote to all petitioners arguing that they had misunderstood. See her letter here

On 28 May the chairs of the Barbican Association and Golden Lane Residents Association responded. See their letter: Response to chair of standards committee  

The Chair of the Standards Committee responded on 29 May: Further response from chair of standards to residents and Graeme Harrower, a supportive common councilman from a business ward, wrote about the affair to the Court of Common Council on 30 May: Email from Graeme Harrower CC 30 May

For background to the petition please see: 

 “City of London Corporation caught in ‘gagging’ row after referring resident councillor to City of London Police”

“City of London Corporation chiefs seek rule change after ‘gagging’ row”

The petition

We, the undersigned residents of the City of London, declare that we have no confidence in the City Corporation’s current “standards” policy and practice.

We petition the Court of Common Council to make immediate and fundamental reforms so that:

– our elected representatives are free to speak and vote on our behalf, including on matters in which they have a declared interest (unless the matter uniquely or especially affects them), so that we have the same level of representation as residents of other local authorities; and

– our elected representatives do not feel intimidated into not speaking or voting on matters that affect us because they fear referral by the Corporation to a complaints process that has proved to be not fit for purpose – or worse, referral to the police -simply because they have a declared interest in a matter, even though they can derive no financial benefit from it.