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OMBUDSMEN INVESTIGATION REPORTS ISSUED SINCE 14 SEPTEMBER 1995

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FINDINGS OF MALADMINISTRATION AND INJUSTICE ...
FINDINGS OF MALADMINISTRATION AND INJUSTICE

Bromley LBC (94/A/1634) special educational needs

The council failed to deal properly with a boy's special educational needs. It failed to review and amend his statement, and therefore denied his parents the opportunity to resolve any disagreement with the council through the appeals procedure. There was also delay in providing a tutor, and that tutor was not qualified to teach children with specific learning difficulties, contrary to an agreement made.

Lewes DC (94/A/3229) planning

The council incorrectly advised a landlord of the planning status of a property he owned in Lewes. The complainants, who were the prospective tenants of the property, claimed that as a result they incurred costs unnecessarily. The ombudsman found that their abortive costs were not caused by the council's error. However, he found that the council's delays in responding to the complainants' written enquiry, and a further delay in responding to a letter of complaint were maladministration causing injustice.

Chesterfield BC (94/C/2003) highways (footpaths)

The council failed to take action either to divert or to reopen an obstructed public footpath which had been blocked by a wall for several years. The complainant reported his concern to the council in 1991, and as yet the path has not been reopened, diverted or extinguished.

DISCONTINUATION REPORT (LOCAL SETTLEMENT)

Sheffield City Council (92/C/1899) Council housing management

A man complained that the council mishandled his application for a transfer from a flat to a house. The ombudsman found that the council had failed to advise the complainant of a change of policy which affected him, causing him to lose the opportunity of an offer of alternative accommodation. The council offered to pay compensation of £500 for its error, and the ombudsman considered this satisfactory and discontinued her investigation. She did not uphold other aspects to the complaint.

FINDINGS OF NO MALADMINISTRATION

Walsall MBC (93/B4337, 94/B/443 & 2776) Land

The three complainants live near a large quarry site, formerly used for the extraction of marl (a limy clay). Over some years there was a gradual slippage of land along the sides of the quarry, causing some land to be lost from a public recreation ground next to the edge. The three complained that the council allowed public land to be lost through slippage, failed to protect common land near the site, and failed to provide adequate fencing and safety. The ombudsman found no evidence of maladministration.

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