Back in 2005 Manchester City Council divested itself of responsibility for some social housing (the EU was making all sorts of inducements available, and this was peak-Blair too). Well, the “experiment” ended in tears, as reported by a journo for the Manchester Evening News.
I wrote to firstname.lastname@example.org, saying I was invoking the Freedom of Information Act 2000, and giving my name and address.
I started – “I was fascinated by the article which just appeared in the Manchester Evening News (13 Jan) on Manchester city council and Northwards Housing. I have a couple of questions (well, 4).” And below are my questions in italics and the responses (three answers and a dodge – not a bad ratio, but the questions were gimmes, mostly).
Who was leader of the Council in 2005 when the decision to hive off responsibility for housing into an “ALMO” was made?
Councillor Richard Leese
Who was the Executive Member with responsibility for this portfolio (whatever it was called back then).
Councillor Eddy Newman
How much did the consultants Campbell Tickell get for their report.
Are additional scrutiny mechanisms going to be put in place, or is the existing scrutiny regarded as adequate?
A report was presented to the Council’s Resources and Governance Overview and Scrutiny Committee on 12 January 2021 and can be found on the Council’s website. https://democracy.manchester.gov.uk/documents/s22282/RGSC%20Overview%20Report%20-%20January%202021.pdf
This last is of course a classic dodge. So I have written back –
Thank you for your answer to my FOIA FOI/3725
I am not satisfied with you response to question 4 – it is a response that does not address the question.
I invite you to answer the question.