N. Yorks Corruption Round-Up – by Tim Hicks

N. Yorks Corruption Round-Up – by Tim Hicks

IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST

Recently, there has been some criticism of Real Whitby investigative journalists’ focus on Councillor Jane Kenyon.

County Councillor Kenyon has featured prominently recently because of her association with Councillor Miller, her bizarre and conflicting allegations of forgery of documents, her position in several Councils and a number of Police organisations, the number and variety of her transgressions and their extraordinary time span.

Consequently she has naturally attracted more attention as more and more people have come forward and more information has emerged.

In this context I can reveal that today there has been another tranche of revelations: 

  • County Councillor Kenyon has again featured in Private Eye  – in connection with an entirely different misconduct story. I would comment, in passing, that appearing twice within Private Eye within three months, on different stories, may be unprecedented in this century.
  • In the list below, new and deeply concerning allegations about Councillor Kenyon are revealed.
  • Miss Kenyon has been criticised in a publication dealing with West Yorkshire Police and her role as Vice Chair of the Yorkshire and Humber Joint Police Authorities Committee (YH-JPAC).
  • NYCC Monitoring Officer Carole Dunn has also been criticised in Private Eye for ignoring the issue of whether Councillors are morally entitled to “Double Dip” when she supported this practice.
  • Scarborough & Whitby MP – and the only Conservative to defend Councillor Kenyon – Robert Goodwill is also criticised in Private Eye for buying cheap economy-class airline tickets and pocketing the difference between the price and the amount he received to pay for the flight,

In order to place that in the wider context of the investigations undertaken by Real Whitby investigative journalists, in the Public Interest, I have prepared a list of the investigations that Real Whitby investigative journalists are currently pursuing and are sufficiently far advanced to present to the public.

Some of our investigative journalists have been concentrating on issues local to Whitby, whilst others have been pursuing infractions whose ramifications extend to Yorkshire as a whole. The list can be accessed at the following URL:

LINK TO INVESTIGATIONS LIST

As you can see, the scale of our investigations is widespread and does not focus on Councillor Kenyon or any political party.

The Real Whitby exposés of the conduct of certain Councillors, Officers and Chief Police Officers has now appeared in the national press and on blogs read throughout the country and beyond.

Their conduct has brought Scarborough Borough Council, North Yorkshire County Council and North Yorkshire Police into public disrepute.

We are unable to quantify the amount of money that has been passed on to Chief Police Officers improperly, because the Police Authority and the Officers concerned are exercising their right to silence and refusing to answer questions on this.

Our best estimate of how much public money has been passed on to Councillors for non-existent Broadband connections is £14,853.26, at a time when the Police and the Council are laying-off workers due to lack of funds and this is a very, conservative estimate indeed.

The real losers here are, of course, the good and long suffering taxpayers of North Yorkshire, and their loss is the services that they could have had provided for the money that has been misappropriated.

I am of the opinion that the ‘Double-Dippers’ and Chief Police Officers would never have been allowed to behave in this way if they had been employed in the private sector and, had they done so, they would all have lost their jobs.

A retired senior police officer has been quoted in the press today opining that receiving the same allowance twice (i.e. Double Dipping) is a criminal offence:

Claiming twice for something like broadband is just the same as claiming mileage from two different authorities for the same journey. If I was investigating these circumstances I would consider a case of fraud by false representation under Section 2 of the Fraud Act 2006..

However, it appears that in Scarborough Borough Council, North Yorkshire County Council and the Police, normal standards of morality and financial control have ceased to be applicable, and that Councillors and Chief Police Officers appear to resent accountability and normal public scrutiny – in fact, pursuing every avenue to evade it – and generally enjoying a special immunity from any sanction or financial control.

The Fraud Act 2006 makes no distinction betweens acts of omission and those of commission.

However, I would emphasize that in the cases of Chief Constable Madgwick and County Councillor Kenyon, they have both apparently actively made claims for expenses to which they are not entitled – which is a deliberate act of commission.

The other Councillors have accepted allowances for expenditure that they have not incurred, and have refused to pay back the money to the Council, which is an act of omission – morally, a lesser transgression.

In my view, instead of maintaining their right to silence, they should all pay back all of the money that they have obtained from the tax-payer, publish an apology and then resign honourably. 

To encourage this (and responsible behavior by public figures generally), Real Whitby is running “The Councillor Tom Fox and Chief Constable Tim Madgwick Voluntary Donations Appeal”.

We would ask that the person’s concerned make a voluntary donation to a North Yorkshire Charity of their choice (not SOGB) equivalent to the amount they have received.  We will update you on progress regularly:

The Councillor Tom Fox and Chief Constable Tim Madgwick Voluntary Donations Appeal.  Donations currently stand at £NIL.

Real Whitby is a responsible, fair and honourable news magazine. If the subjects of our investigations feel aggrieved, they have the right of reply.  Should anyone mentioned in this article wish to issue a rebuttal, it will be published in full.  Real Whitby looks forward to their response.

22 Responses to "N. Yorks Corruption Round-Up – by Tim Hicks"

  1. admin  September 20, 2012 at 8:00 pm

    Genius, at last something I can understand. Well written, concise and to the point.

    Reply
  2. The Dove  September 20, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    Wow ! How much longer can this go ignored ? You just know that every councillor will read this . Wanting so much for an investigation that ends with the truth and resignations.

    Reply
  3. The Man In The White Suit  September 21, 2012 at 5:31 am

    Great write up,but………. As I have said in the past, ….. The gravy train is unstoppable ,………. Even when these “MP’s” etc get investigated , it’s still all a inside job,…. A few slapped wrists, a few scapegoats and a hell of a lot of golden handshakes…….

    Like I say …… The gravy train is unstoppable ….

    Reply
    • pete budd  September 21, 2012 at 5:08 pm

      Everyone expects gravy with their roast beef and yorkshire pudding.

      Reply
      • Ron L  September 21, 2012 at 6:37 pm

        Even vegetarians Pete ?

        Reply
  4. Sarraceniac  September 21, 2012 at 6:37 am

    ‘In my view, instead of maintaining their right to silence, they should all pay back all of the money that they have obtained from the tax-payer, publish an apology and then resign honourably.’

    Just paying it back, apologising and then throwing themselves on the mercy of the voters would go a long way Tim. Apparently they have not learned from the alleged leader of the Lie-Dem Party that when all else fails you have to rely on a sycophantic totally unbelievable apology. And if you can get a stupid song on FaceBook so much the better.

    Reply
  5. Nigel Ward  September 21, 2012 at 7:38 am

    PRIVATE EYE – 1323

    ROTTEN BOROUGHS

    DOUBLE-DIPPING

    Politicians who sit on more than one council in North Yorkshire have enjoyed a nice little earner in recent years by accepting IT allowances from both authorities while incurring one lot of expense.

    North Yorkshire county council (NYCC) pays £500 a year, as part of councillors’ basic allowance, to cover the cost of having a broadband connection at home – very generous, as it’s about four times what broadband actually costs. meanwhile, eight NYCC councillors who also sit on Scarborough borough council receive a handy £255 a year from that council for having broadband at home. Senior Tory Cllr Jane Kenyon, whose difficulties in keeping her Register of Interests up-to-date we reported in Eye 1318, nobly does not take Scarborough’s £255 broadband allowance – although she did claim £712.15 for IT from North Yorkshire Police Authority, which she chairs, in 2010/11, as well as NYCC’s £500.

    Responding to a campaign on a local website, Real Whitby, NYCC’s monitoring officer, Carole Dunn, states that the double-dipping councillors are merely claiming their “entitlement” – so there’s no need for her to take any action. the question of whether they are morally entitled to that “entitlement” is ignored.

    Any locals expecting Scarborough & Whitby MP Robert Goodwill to take a lead are likely to be disappointed. Back in 2000, as a member of the European parliament, he boasted that when booking flights to Brussels “We get a set fee of around £500, but if I buy a cheaper ticket, economy class for, say, £160, I cam pocket the difference and, as a capitalist, also as a British Conservative, I see it as a challenge to buy cheap tickets and make some profit on the system because that is the system”. Trebles all round!

    Reply
    • Ron L  September 21, 2012 at 6:40 pm

      Mr Ward – you have not even tagged your post as ‘In The Public Interest’ !

      Reply
      • Sarraceniac  September 25, 2012 at 12:34 pm

        Mr. L. You have not even tagged your reply, ‘Of interest only to people of limited intellect.’

        Reply
        • Ron L  September 25, 2012 at 2:11 pm

          Mr Sarraceniac – As I wanted to ensure it would be of interest to one of limited intellect such as your good self.
          How right I was.

          Reply
          • Sally h  September 25, 2012 at 11:36 pm

            Why do I get the feeling that someone always checks the spelling in your posts? if you asked nicely they could help you with some positive , interesting replies .

            Reply
            • Ron L  September 26, 2012 at 6:24 am

              Oh hear Sally h, can’t you do any better than that?
              Nice to know that I am making you get some feelings though.

              Reply
  6. neil scott  September 21, 2012 at 4:55 pm

    6 million pound fraud in cleveland police force should be investigated as to the false arrests of Neil Scott for burglary conviction, over ten years 23 arrests,he knows ray Mallon the corrupt mayor,all for ONE conviction that shows all involved in the conspiracy to defruad the public and interfere with the course of justice.Flawed by there chief witnesses of the burglary case and G4S staff at the time of arrest. http://wp.me/p2euOV-cQ. NeilScott1@wordpressdotcom

    Reply
  7. Richard Ineson  September 22, 2012 at 11:33 am

    There has been much criticism of Miss Kenyon in recent months adn all h of it has been backed up by documentary evidence and hard facts. Miss Kenyon has chosen to remain silent and has not refuted any of the allegations. Some of my own concerns relate to her Chairmanship of the NYPA and the NYPA Management Board, I wrote about these concerns,in earlier this year, and copy them below, for the information of anyone who may consider that the activities of Miss Kenyon, in relation to her public positions on the many bodies with which she is connected are being misrepresented.

    N.Y.P.A. – R.I.P. by Richard Ineson

    The North Yorkshire Police Authority (NYPA) is soon to be abolished; during recent years we have seen mismanagement of public money by this body and dishonourable conduct from senior police officers.

    The people of North Yorkshire have undoubtedly been badly served by both the members of the North Yorkshire Police Authority, the members of which are: -

    Chair: Cllr. Jane Kenyon,
    Mr. Bill Baugh,
    Cllr. Carl Les,
    Mr.Tony Hargreaves J.P.,
    Cllr. Keith Orrell,
    Cllr. Helen Swiers,
    Cllr. Polly English,
    Cllr. Fiona Fitzpatrick,
    Cllr. David Ireton,
    Cllr. Janet Jefferson,
    Cllr. Brian Marshall,
    Mr. Jason Fitzgerald-Smith,
    Mrs. Erica Taylor J.P.,
    Mrs. Rajinda Richards,
    Dr. Craig Shaw,
    Mr. Ian Whittaker J.P.
    and also the North Yorkshire Police Authority Management Board, the members of which are:-

    Chair Cllr. Jane Kenyon,
    Vice Chair Mr. Bill Baugh,
    Mr. Tony Hargreaves J.P,
    Cllr. Carl Les,
    Cllr. Keith Orrell.
    The Management Board has delegated powers to enable it to ensure, that amongst many other things, the Authority (NYPA) operates in an open and transparent manner.

    The Authority (NYPA) has a high profile and standing. It monitors expenditure, (which presumably includes salaries and allowances paid to the employees of the Authority, including its Chief Officers) against the Authority’s budget.

    The actions of the NYPA have been criticised by the Independent Police Complaints Commission, who said that:

    “the Authority’s lack of control was unacceptable”
    and also by Hugh Bayley M.P., former M.P Phil Willis and Julian Smith M.P.

    But strangely, only eight out of seventy two Councillors supported a motion criticising Grahame Maxwell for wasting tax payers’ money.

    The most notable/outrageous/scandalous/disgraceful events in the recent past, which I can recall are:-
    The squandering of £500,000 on providing Volvo V70 and Range Rover vehicles for senior police officers who were not qualified to drive these vehicles on police business.

    The £28,000 shower installed in the office of then Chief Constable Della Canning.

    Then there is the matter of Peta Ackerley the wife of former Police Superintendent (in charge of NYPA police force training) who received £400,000 from the force in payments to her training companies, companies which, according to an audit report, ‘often got work without going through proper procurement procedures’.

    Superintendent Ackerley escaped disciplinary action after his application to retire , after thirty years service, was accepted by Chief Constable Grahame Maxwell; on this point, officers have the right to retire after thirty years, but where disciplinary charges are outstanding this right can be waived until the charges have been heard, in this case this was not done.

    Phil Willis, M.P. for Harrogate and Knaresborough at the time, said,

    “Hopefully, this brings to an end a period when NY Police had a cavalier attitude to accountability for public money”.
    High hopes indeed.

    Then there are the circumstances surrounding the early retirement of Assistant Chief Constable, David Collins in July 2009, who earned a £100,000 salary, and who went off on the sick in November 2008, claiming stress, and was still off work in June 2009, on half his salary.

    On 4th June, he attended a University of York conference and handed out flyers to delegates to promote his life coaching consultancy service.

    But, unfortunately for Mr Collins, one of the conference delegates was his former boss, North Yorkshire’s ex-Chief Constable Della Cannings, who promptly reported him to North Yorkshire Police Authority.

    They investigated and discovered Mr Collins was also offering mentoring services via the internet.

    The 49-year-old was allowed to back up his business qualifications with training while he worked as a policeman, but he did not have permission to seek customers for his business.

    Shortly after being discovered by Ms Cannings, Mr Collins went on holiday. When he returned he discovered that the police authority wanted to relieve him of his post.

    Instead Mr Collins, of Monk Fryston near Selby, successfully applied for retirement. Because of this, he will still receive a six-figure sum for his 30 years of service.

    Jeremy Holderness, the chief executive of North Yorkshire Police Authority, said:

    “Although the authority considered all options with regard to the conduct of Mr Collins in the circumstances, it was not possible to instigate formal disciplinary action against him as he was no longer a serving police officer.”
    There are other considerations here of course – if Mr.Collins was too sick to work, he was presumably claiming sickness/incapacity benefit, under the terms of which, the claimant is not allowed to do any work of any kind, perhaps the Dept. of Work and Pensions might have an interest in reclaiming any benefits which might have been paid in this case.

    The nepotism cases which resulted in the resignation/early retirement of Adam Briggs and Graham Maxwell.
    It has previously been revealed that the Independent Police Complaints Commission spent £100,000 investigating claims that Mr Maxwell and his deputy, Adam Briggs, unfairly helped relatives during a recruitment exercise for new police officers last year.
    Two counts of misconduct were upheld against Mr Briggs in December and he retired from the force earlier this year.

    But the main focus of the investigation and subsequent disciplinary action was Mr Maxwell, with tens of thousands of pounds mounting up in legal costs after the Chief Constable initially challenged the charge of gross misconduct.

    He only admitted the charge last month and was given a final written warning.

    The full police authority costs for bringing the cases against Mr Maxwell and Mr Briggs were £218,456. Around £19,000 was spent on inquiries involving both officers – but the bulk was spent solely on the Chief Constable’s case.

    If Mr Maxwell had admitted gross misconduct last October, most of the £200,000 costs could have been avoided. It is understood it may still have cost around £20,000 to carry out the formalities of a hearing.

    Skipton and Ripon Tory MP Julian Smith, who previously described Mr Maxwell’s position as “untenable”, said:

    “Taken with the one hundred thousand pounds spent by the Independent Police Complaints Commission, the amount of money this investigation has cost so far is over a quarter of a million pounds.

    In addition, this is not necessarily the end of the money spent as these figures do not include any money spent by the force itself.

    Had the Chief Constable admitted his guilt late last year, instead of at the very last minute, hundreds of thousands of pounds of taxpayers’ money could have been saved on legal costs.

    It is deeply regrettable that during challenging financial times, the actions of the county’s leading police officer should have cost the Police Authority so much. Whether it’s been the communities of North Yorkshire or police officers themselves, the people I’ve spoken to have been very clear.

    They have been shocked by this situation and I think they will be even more surprised by these costs.”

    York Labour MP Hugh Bayley, who previously suggested the Chief Constable should consider his position, said:

    “With the police budget being so squeezed by the Government, it’s tragic that so much money has been spent on this. Money is desperately needed for front-line policing.”
    The police authority said it had nothing to add to a statement made last month which said Mr Maxwell “could have avoided organisational and personal turmoil and unnecessary cost to the council tax payer” if he had admitted his guilt late last year.

    Responding to a freedom of information request, the North Yorkshire Force said it had spent £1,171.00 on advice from legal counsel in relation to the inquiries into Mr Maxwell and Mr Briggs and also £1,763.88 on a public relations agency.

    Mr Maxwell declined to comment.

    The enquiry/hearing was held in secret, at a secret location, strange then that the North Yorkshire Police Authority Management Board proclaims that one of its aims is to ensure that NYPA operates in an ‘open and transparent manner’.

    Then of course, the revelations about enormous sums of money spent on ‘personal development’ by Adam Briggs and Graham Maxwell.

    NYPA chief executive Jeremy Holderness said the allowances were designed to ensure its Chief Constable and their deputy could “perform at the top of their game” and “develop into more senior roles”.
    He said:

    “Such allowances are not unfamiliar in policing, or indeed many other avenues of business, and they are seen to be quite reasonable in the circumstances of employment of senior professionals.”
    He said such allowances were generally beneficial, and called the IPCC response “disproportionate”, but said:

    “We agree that, in this instance, sadly the arrangements might not have operated as we would have wished and we have learned lessons for the future.”
    N.Y.P.A. – R.I.P.

    Reply
  8. Peter Hofschröer  September 25, 2012 at 11:06 am

    Yesterday’s questions in Parliament were rather interesting. Do see:

    http://www.theyworkforyou.com/wrans/?id=2012-09-24a.182.7&s=speaker%3A10406#g182.8

    Lord Maginnis of Drumglass (Crossbench)

    To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether a person who (1) is subject to an undischarged bankruptcy, or (2) is a director of a company subject to an undischarged bankruptcy, is eligible to chair or serve on a police authority; and whether the membership of North Yorkshire Police Authority is consistent with the rules on bankruptcy.

    Lord Henley (Conservative)

    A person subject to a bankruptcy order, or whose estate has been sequestered, is disqualified from being a member of a police authority until or unless the bankruptcy order is annulled or the sequestration of the estate is recalled or reduced. A person is also disqualified if he or she is subject to a disqualification order or disqualification undertaking under the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986, the Companies (Northern Ireland) Order 1989(2), the Company Directors Disqualification (Northern Ireland) Order 2002(3) or the Insolvency Act 1986(4). There are no specific disqualification requirements for chairs of police authorities. The Government are not in a position to comment on individual cases.

    _____

    If I understand this correctly, Jane Kenyon “is disqualified from being a member of a police authority.”

    How comes she is chair and why has nothing been done about this?

    Reply
    • Peter Hofschröer  September 27, 2012 at 12:25 pm

      This one just came in:

      From: Jeremy Holderness [mailto:Jeremy.Holderness@nypa.gov.uk]
      Sent: 26 September 2012 14:38
      To: Baker Roger
      Subject: RE: JANE KENYON BANKRUPTCY – NORTH YORKSHIRE POLICE AUTHORITY

      I can confirm that Jane Margaret Kenyon does not fulfil any criteria which would render her disqualified under the law from membership of North Yorkshire Police Authority or indeed membership of any other category of local authority.

      Jeremy Holderness

      Chief Executive
      North Yorkshire Police Authority

      01765641839
      http://www.nypa.gov.uk

      ________

      I am reminded of those immortal words of former tennis champion John McEnroe:

      “You cannot be serious!”

      Reply
  9. Sarraceniac  September 25, 2012 at 12:30 pm

    Most interesting Peter. I suspect if you started questioning this you would meet the usual stonewalling. i.e. ‘We will reply in November after the Police Commissioner takes office and we can say ‘It doesn’t matter any more’.

    Or if you are lucky, ‘There are no specific disqualification requirements for chairs of police authorities that means she is OK’. Followed by, ‘What do you mean, ‘She should never have been on the darned committee in the first place?’ Oh sorry we misunderstood the question. Please give us another couple of months to work out a response that just raises more questions’.

    I really am getting old and cynical and I have, unfortunately, seen this for 50 years.

    Reply
    • Ron L  September 25, 2012 at 4:53 pm

      Old, cynical, seen it for 50 years then turn into a keyboard warrior !
      Good for you, sir.

      Reply
  10. Jane Swales  September 25, 2012 at 6:33 pm

    The comments on the political issues certainly cover the full gamut of human intellect. I suppose that’s unavoidable. I prefer the well researched and informative end of the spectrum. I wish I could add to the detail that has already been so ably presented. Perhaps when my husband retires…

    Reply
    • Ron L  September 25, 2012 at 7:15 pm

      A very interesting comment.

      Reply
  11. Tom Brown  September 25, 2012 at 8:00 pm

    Just how powerful do we think county Councillors and senior police officers are?
    Jane Kenyon along with all chairs of all police authorities and senior police officers have been groomed for something a lot less than stardom. Agent Provocateurs (got that Ron?)like Carol Dunn have been -like MPs monitoring officers- goading innocent fools into crime and then exposing them as the villain of the piece.Now here comes the conspiracy theory- Brussels needs to take over this shambles that they have created- Fools like some I could mention will or indeed have already fallen for it.

    Reply
    • Ron L  September 26, 2012 at 6:35 am

      Got it Tom !
      Another enlightening post !
      Isn’t Agent Provocateur a racy womens underwear range?
      Have you been carrying out in depth research on there Tom?

      Reply

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