Mr Mustard has been going through the April, May & June 2011 lists from Barnet Council that they call Vendor Payments and Commitments over £500. The description is a cop-out as what the government asked to be published was all spending over £500. Now Mr Mustard thinks that the easiest and most logical way to do that it to list all actual payments of over £500 and in fact Barnet Council really think that too as their webpage about this says :-
Spending over £500 is published as part of a drive to improve openness and transparency.
During the financial quarter July to September 2010 £ 95 million was paid to vendors on a huge variety of items including care homes, agency staff and utility bills.
For reasons of privacy payments to individuals including foster carers, children’s and adult carers are not included in the list. Payments made via CHAPS e.g. repayment of loans, funding to schools, housing benefit payments and payments taken directly from our bank account (excluding agency costs) are not included either.
So one expects the list to contain payments but it includes goods received notes, duplications, reversals and is consequently almost unusable and certainly not reliable. My fellow blogger Mr Reasonable has already pointed this out a little while ago. Mr Mustard expects that Mr Eric Pickles MP has already noticed this and one of his assistants will be contacting Barnet Council to get this put right.
Now Mr Mustard has just noticed that in the 3 months ended 30 June 2011 Mr Travers only qualified for a payment of £1,000, yes I know, just one day's work.
What can have happened. Some possible answers:-
- Mr Travers agrees he is overpaid and is working for almost nothing in that quarter to help balance the budget and make the bloggers happy.
- He left and we didn't notice ?
- Mr Mustard cannot read 3 spreadsheets accurately.
- The Inland Revenue, as was, have been round and Mr Travers is now an employee on PAYE.
- He volunteered to become an employee after all possibly in order to neatly sidestep the OJEU problem of his contract not being advertised.
- He only worked one day and we didn't notice.
- The list is just plain wrong. Now that would be a travesty.
It is half past midnight and Mr Mustard wants to sleep so he will post this blog and go off to bed and who knows by the time he gets up, not very early, the answer will have been put in the comments box by a kind Barnet Council employee. If not that will be another Freedom of Information request to be sent off. Is it any wonder Barnet Council why you get so many?