Just over a week ago, an official ushered blogger Jason Cobb out of a full meeting of Colchester Council and gave him a stiff talking to.
Now, contrary to what you might think, Jason hadn’t been tearing up the furniture or sprinkling litter in the vicinity of Councillor Goss. Nor had he preloaded on baked beans and dropped a fat one in the chamber.
With only about 30% of people locally voting in elections, it’s vital to find ways to engage more people in the democratic process – warts and all.
It’s not good enough for councillors to say they support openness, yet reserve the right to ban members of the public recording meetings. You can bet your bottom dollar the meetings that don’t get recorded are the ones that are most embarrassing for the councillors involved…