A Barrage Of 'Business Speak'
A week in the life of a local councillor as told by Sam Hearn
Cllr Sam Hearn who represents the Riverside ward in Chiswick, is chairman of the Chiswick Area Forum. He has written this account of his week as a busy local councillor
Friday 18th September: A colleague asks if I will stand in for him on a selection panel for Hounslow’s new Director of ICT. My Council email box has filled up again. Half of the emails are adverts for services and products that I do not need and never will.
Saturday 19th September: At Chiswick Library for the Councillors’ Surgery. As always it was good to share this second Saturday in the month surgery with Tony Arbour our GLA member. In the afternoon Sue and I accompany our noble hound, to St Nick’s Church for the wedding of Ellie, Chiswick’s much loved ‘Fairy Dogmother ’. The Bride looked beautiful in white and took time to speak to each of her well behaved and smartly dressed canine guard of honour.
Monday 21st September: A ninety five page pack for the selection of the new ICT Director arrives by email. My heart sinks.
Tuesday 22nd September: To the Conservative Mayoral Hustings in St Paul's Church to drop off the bar float and help set up. I move swiftly on to Hounslow to participate in the latest meeting of the Council’s Audit Committee. Most of the documents relate to the financial year end and have been scrutinised in detail in draft on previous occasions. The external auditors KPMG are basically happy and we councillors are left to quibble about which numbers should have brackets and whether dates have been correctly stated. The self-assessment review of the Audit Committee points up some key areas for improvement but shows how far we have come. Finally back to the hustings for the closing speech and then off to the Station House for a quick pint with candidate Andrew Boff who is on excellent form.
Wednesday 23rd September: More emails about the fine detail of the CPZ Consultation and some detailed arguments that I have never heard before. With my Strand on the Green School Governors’ hat on it’s off to Isleworth this evening for a meeting of the Link Governors’ Group. A sobering talk by an impressive local government officer (who I will not name) on the work of LBH staff in driving forward the Government’s Prevent agenda.
Thursday 24th September: I find myself shut in The Mayor’s Parlour for five hours sitting on the final selection panel for Hounslow’s new Director of ICT. This is a rare opportunity to work closely with Deputy Leader Amrit Mann and Lead Member Corinna Smart and Chief Executive Mary Harpley. Genuinely interesting work but the barrage of business speak was a little wearing after a while. Mercifully there was almost no IT jargon. Apparently the candidates had got this out of their systems at an earlier stage - phew.
September 28, 2015