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    • MannyLondon
    • By MannyLondon 16th Nov 19, 7:01 AM
    • 12Posts
    • 0Thanks
    MannyLondon
    Sueing the local council
    • #1
    • 16th Nov 19, 7:01 AM
    Sueing the local council 16th Nov 19 at 7:01 AM
    Hi All,

    I applied for a vehicle crossover and the application has been refused. The reason provided does not reflect whatís written on the council policy. We involved the local ward councillor and she said that the response for the council looks very inconsistent to say the least. We then had several exchanges with the officer who rejected our application to no avail (they keep coming up with all sort or reasons, he does not understand its own policy, we feel that they are taking the mick).

    Whatís my options? Can I sue the council? We are well within all mandatory criteria for the application so we really donít understand why they donít grant it and the reasons provided donít add up. We even thought that there is another reason (fraud? Some dodgy stuff going on at the back?). We have a good written trail of evidence and their responses.
Page 2
    • MannyLondon
    • By MannyLondon 21st Nov 19, 9:50 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    MannyLondon
    I have had 2 complaints against my local council
    The first went to the LGO as the council had been messing me about big time
    as soon as the LGO were involved the council rolled over before the LGO had their response
    The second the council rolled over when I did not think they would
    I suspect this is because I was on their list of complainers who are prepared to involve LGO
    Make of this what you will
    Originally posted by Jumblebumble
    Can I go directly to the Ombudsman?

    I have already appealed through to the officer who rejected my application, but he didn't even bother reply within the 10 days as specified on the website. He said that the councillor should have replied (???) by email. As of today, I don't have a formal answer as to why my application was rejected.

    Summary (more of less) of what happened until now:
    1) Applied for vehicle crossover
    2) Received formal letter with refusal. Reason for refusal are not exactly listed on policy, other reasons are mentioned on refusal letter (!)
    3) We appeal, and produce a detailed letter explaining where and why they failed to apply their own policy correctly. I solicitor friend of mine helped draft the response here.
    4) No formal response from the officer for quite some time...
    5) We involve the ward councillor. She agrees that the refusal does not make sense, but there is little she can do she says
    6) We finally receive a half baked response from the officer (via email, something like 20 or so days after the chasers) stating the same reasons as the original letter (i.e. he ignored our appeal letter completely and says that we are trying to come up with a reason to approve the crossover (!)
    7) With regard to the officer who refused our application: it is like talking to a broken record, it seems that in the entire department it is all down to an officer's interpretation of their own policy. (For the record, I am a chartered mechanical engineer and I do like technical drawings, policies and rules. I am 100% certain that our application complies 100% with the rules contained in the policy)....and the reasons provided by the officer do not have any logic whatsoever.

    Brickwall. A very good use of my council tax money I would say!

    Can I go directly to the LGO or do I still need to follow the Council local compliant procedure first? I feel that I am just wasting time as my complaint will very likely go to the same department. Perhaps even the same officer, who knows. But I will do it if I have to clear this step before engaging with the LGO...?
    • MannyLondon
    • By MannyLondon 21st Nov 19, 10:08 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    MannyLondon
    Can I go directly to the Ombudsman?

    I have already appealed through to the officer who rejected my application, but he didn't even bother reply within the 10 days as specified on the website. He said that the councillor should have replied (???) by email. As of today, I don't have a formal answer as to why my application was rejected.

    Summary (more of less) of what happened until now:
    1) Applied for vehicle crossover
    2) Received formal letter with refusal. Reason for refusal are not exactly listed on policy, other reasons are mentioned on refusal letter (!)
    3) We appeal, and produce a detailed letter explaining where and why they failed to apply their own policy correctly. I solicitor friend of mine helped draft the response here.
    4) No formal response from the officer for quite some time...
    5) We involve the ward councillor. She agrees that the refusal does not make sense, but there is little she can do she says
    6) We finally receive a half baked response from the officer (via email, something like 20 or so days after the chasers) stating the same reasons as the original letter (i.e. he ignored our appeal letter completely and says that we are trying to come up with a reason to approve the crossover (!)
    7) With regard to the officer who refused our application: it is like talking to a broken record, it seems that in the entire department it is all down to an officer's interpretation of their own policy. (For the record, I am a chartered mechanical engineer and I do like technical drawings, policies and rules. I am 100% certain that our application complies 100% with the rules contained in the policy)....and the reasons provided by the officer do not have any logic whatsoever.

    Brickwall. A very good use of my council tax money I would say!

    Can I go directly to the LGO or do I still need to follow the Council local compliant procedure first? I feel that I am just wasting time as my complaint will very likely go to the same department. Perhaps even the same officer, who knows. But I will do it if I have to clear this step before engaging with the LGO...?
    Originally posted by MannyLondon
    (Update): I checked the LGO website, they state that we must exhaust the local complaint procedures first, so I guess thatís my answer...
    • lincroft1710
    • By lincroft1710 22nd Nov 19, 4:21 PM
    • 12,398 Posts
    • 10,999 Thanks
    lincroft1710
    If this was a planning application and you appealed, it will be the Planning Inspectorate who will decide the outcome, not your local council planning dept. Have you received any correspondence from the PI?
    • Barny1979
    • By Barny1979 22nd Nov 19, 7:26 PM
    • 5,364 Posts
    • 52,270 Thanks
    Barny1979
    If this was a planning application and you appealed, it will be the Planning Inspectorate who will decide the outcome, not your local council planning dept. Have you received any correspondence from the PI?
    Originally posted by lincroft1710
    You do not necessarily need Planning Permission for a Vehicle Access Crossing, if it is not on a major road, eg A road, therefore OP is presumably on a residential side road and has therefore just applied to the Highway Authority, not the Planning Department.
    2013 - 313 AFDs, 2014 - 289 AFDs, 2015 - 321 AFDs, 2016 - 276 AFDs, 2017 - 276 AFDs, 2018 - 240 AFDs 2019 - 263 AFDs up to end of November
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    • MannyLondon
    • By MannyLondon 22nd Nov 19, 7:34 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    MannyLondon
    You do not necessarily need Planning Permission for a Vehicle Access Crossing, if it is not on a major road, eg A road, therefore OP is presumably on a residential side road and has therefore just applied to the Highway Authority, not the Planning Department.
    Originally posted by Barny1979
    Correct, we live at the end of a cul de sac.
    • lincroft1710
    • By lincroft1710 23rd Nov 19, 4:15 PM
    • 12,398 Posts
    • 10,999 Thanks
    lincroft1710
    Correct, we live at the end of a cul de sac.
    Originally posted by MannyLondon
    So which council department did you apply to?
    • MannyLondon
    • By MannyLondon 23rd Nov 19, 6:57 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    MannyLondon
    So which council department did you apply to?
    Originally posted by lincroft1710
    Highway Authority (is this what you were looking for...?). Thanks all.
    • Cherry Burton
    • By Cherry Burton 24th Nov 19, 9:47 PM
    • 129 Posts
    • 712 Thanks
    Cherry Burton
    I've worked for various local councils over 30 years. I've dealt with lots of complaints in that time. Of all the complaints I have investigated I would estimate about 5% were upheld through the council's complaints procedure. Very few people go as far as the LGO. In 30 years only 1 complaint I have been involved in has been upheld by the LGO, compensation of £100 was ordered. We were all very upset at the result.

    CB
    1/10/2015 Debt Free
    1/1/2018 Mortgage Free
    Now saving for early retirement
    • MannyLondon
    • By MannyLondon 25th Nov 19, 6:38 AM
    • 12 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    MannyLondon
    I've worked for various local councils over 30 years. I've dealt with lots of complaints in that time. Of all the complaints I have investigated I would estimate about 5% were upheld through the council's complaints procedure. Very few people go as far as the LGO. In 30 years only 1 complaint I have been involved in has been upheld by the LGO, compensation of £100 was ordered. We were all very upset at the result.

    CB
    Originally posted by Cherry Burton
    Thanks for your insight.

    Weíve taken control of the timeline as I am done being bossed around by a councilís employee with unreasonable reasons. We know we are sitting on a winner here otherwise we wouldnít be so upset about all this.

    Weíve initiated the local complaint procedure, I believe this to be a waste of time, but our objective is to tick the box so that we can go to the LGO. I informed the council (in my formal compliant) that if we donít succeed we will be filing a formal complaint with the LGO and also writing to the local MP as we want him to know how the local council tax money is being spent (as in waste of councilís time).

    Will let you know.
    • lincroft1710
    • By lincroft1710 25th Nov 19, 6:31 PM
    • 12,398 Posts
    • 10,999 Thanks
    lincroft1710

    and also writing to the local MP as we want him to know how the local council tax money is being spent (as in waste of councilís time).
    Originally posted by MannyLondon
    He/she won't care. May make some sympathetic noises, but that will be all.
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