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  1. Published on: 21/03/2020 10:44 PMReported by: rogerblaxall
    Dear Flood Risk Manager - Lancashire County Council

    As you know we have attempted to contact LCC, with some urgency, in order to discuss the Jacob’s report since both Councillor Pope and yourself left your own meeting about the report (20th Feb) with Burscough Flooding Group, after Councillor Pope stated that Councillor Officers were unable to talk when a recording device was operating, causing it to end.

    Obviously the single Council Officer who remained (but would not have the meeting) was aware that it was perfectly normal and a legal provision that the public be allowed to record meetings with Lancashire County Council covertly; and that Burscough Flooding Group (BFG) were simply being polite, open and honest, in informing LCC that it wished to openly record the meeting, first by email in advance (9th Feb) and again in the meeting (20th Feb) when it started recording.

    You must realise that residents will inevitably perceive that it was very odd for LCC, to first refuse to share the draft Jacob’s report with the BFG and Burscough Parish Council; and then, by leaving their own meeting, fail to take any of their views into account when finalising it, especially as without the agreement and assistance of both BFG and Burscough Parish Council, the current Jacob’s report would have not have been produced.

    It is deeply unfair that only the parties, LCC, West Lancashire Borough Council (WLBC) and United Utilities (UU), with large vested financial interests, have shaped and approved the publicly funded report on Burscough’s flooding problems; whilst they simultaneously prevented public oversight of its production. Because of the lack of public oversight, the final Jacob’s report has basic errors including: understating the responsibilities of LCC, WLBC and UU; and being almost entirely uncritical of them.

    Therefore, there is a certain inevitability that the public will perceive that the report is a whitewash.

    Best regards

    Gavin Rattray, Secretary, Burscough Flooding Group
     

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