ANOTHER standards complaint has been dropped against a Tory councillor for comments directed at a member of the public.
Saughall resident Ross Jones complained when Cllr Brian Crowe (Mollington & Saughall) described him as ‘a headache in the village’ but the remark was found not have breached the councillors’ code of conduct.
The ruling follows the case against council leader Cllr Mike Jones being dropped for calling two residents ‘d***heads’.
Ross Jones has been campaigning to persuade Cheshire West and Chester Council to convert the former Ridings School at Saughall into a community facility.
But the council had agreed to sell the site to Morris Homes subject to planning permission which was recently granted unanimously by the planning committee for 28 homes.
The original application had been withdrawn with Cllr Crowe suggesting in a round robin email that the applicants ‘wanted a stronger stance’ in the report by council planning officer Nick Smith who had nevertheless recommended approval.
Mr Jones was concerned by the implications of the comment, prompting Cllr Crowe to email Mr Smith with an explanation which the campaigner obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.
Cllr Crowe wrote: “Nick, this guy is a headache in the village at the moment on several issues. I seem to have given him more ammunition with the comment below. Deal with it as best you can. Suggest you be as brief as you can as he has all the time in the world to pick up on anything and everything.”
The council’s deputy monitoring officer, Trudie Odaka, decided ‘no action’ with respect to Mr Jones’s complaint but did not give a reason.
Mr Jones responded: “Given the situation, and the nature of the comments made, no action is absolutely unacceptable. Given that there are factually incorrect details in your response, I find it hard to believe the complaint has been looked at properly.”
Cllr Crowe, who criticised Mr Jones for raising unrealistic expectations among opponents of the scheme, told The Chronicle: “I think ‘headache’ is quite polite.”