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0 votes

You may wish to see NALCs explanation for refusing password access to LTNs for Councillors . Say no more

The link on your email is the ALCA website. ALCA has enabled Clerks to
give Cllrs their own log-in permissions, with passwords linked to the
individual user (i.e. not shared or the Clerks) if they so wish. As this can
be done individually it is not a problem, because if a Cllr loses their seat
or resigns, we have the facility to delete their access.
For the NALC website: There are now approx.. 10,000 local councils in NALC
membership, multiply that by the number of councillors and its about 80,000
individuals. The password access is the same right across a county (and in
our case three UA’s), not individual to each person and so the risk of
passwords being provided to non-member councils by kind (or vindictive) Cllr
is acute. Why should those who aren’t paying have protected information? To
give it some protection we ask Clerks not to give Cllrs individual access.

The roles of Officers and Councillors are clearly defined. Officers are the
administrators and legal advisers to their council and Cllr are the
community engagers and reps of the electors. Cllrs should always look to
their Clerk / Officers to provide legal advice, as that is their
responsibility. Cllrs will never be denied the information contained within
the Legal Topic Notes on the NALC site, we just ask that they are provided
through the Clerk/Officers. It a bit like joining the library and demanding
to take all the reference books home – you can’t, but you still have a right
to all the information contained within them, if accessed in the correct
manner.

Also, because the passwords are WECA area wide, it’s impossible to change
them every time a Cllr resigns or loses their seat, making them even more
vulnerable.

Most of what is in the Legal Topic Notes relating to Cllrs is summarised in
the Good Councillors Guide and to be fair a vast majority of Cllrs don’t
want direct access to information on things like Easement Across Common
Land, but they would expect their Clerk/ Officers to be able to provide that
information to them should such an issue ever arise – that’s the purpose to
the Legal Topic Notes on the NALC website.



There are some (arguably lazy?) Clerks that allow all Cllr to have the NALC
passwords, but they are arguably shirking their responsibilities and at the
same time putting the privileged information at additional risk. We haven’t
banned Clerks from sharing the NALC passwords, but sincerely hope they will
cooperate and not do it and that Cllrs can work as a team with their Clerks
/ Officers and access the information in the correct way.



Clerks from other councils sharing the passwords outside their own Cllrs
will have a complaint raised against them.



NALC are soon to launch a new website where the access permissions will
change and do away with these problems, but until then…….”

by (5.0k points)

6 Answers

+1 vote
Then NALC needs to change its name and raisin d’etre FROM NALC to SLCC then.
NALC you are supposed to support CLLRS, if you don’t release information to Cllrs what do you even exist for?

If NALC prevent Cllrs directly accessing information I genuinely hope, and will energetically broadcast and encourage, councils to discontinue their subscription.
I’m considering attending the NALC conference in London in March. Ears will be getting bent if I do.
by (21.9k points)
+1 vote
I would not worry, the advice is available on the web 'somewhere'.  Re the full text I did not think clerks were legal advisors, rather you can ask the clerk for advice, and they can quote the law and find it,  but they are not qualified to provide 'legal advice'.
by (2.5k points)
I agree. I would never call myself a legal advisor, just knowledgeable in the law relevant to parish councils, as required by my role...
MrsAbster   I think that is a good reply.    Plus you know how to get legal advice.
+2 votes
The analogy of the library is spurious in that if you wish to find reference to a particular. topic the friendly librarian will give it to you no questions or censorship (If you have a paid for library card of course).

The clerk is the employee of the council and there to facilitate the wishes of the council not decide what information a councillor is allowed to access by employing sometimes censorship for personal agendas ( never happens does it?)

So basically NALC is attempting to restrict what information access a council can have as the payer of the annual subscription.
Their reason given is because they do not have the capabilities in their website to meet the demands for information as promises made to obtain the subscriptions in the first place. I always thought that when a company fail to supply what they advertise they are failing and required to correct when it is not fit for purpose.

Come on NALC cough up the goods and stop short changing you customers. NOW!
by (27.2k points)
+1 vote
I don't understand their argument... I have given the login details to my councillors many times and have not been told not to. Whether they use this information is another matter...
I take issue with being called lazy for providing this information.
by (24.5k points)
0 votes
Responses like the one given just reinforce the emerging view that NALC is not fit for purpose and incapable of moving forward with existing officers mindsets deeply entrenched. That response actually managed to upset/offend both clerks & councillors at same time which is some going.
by (9.1k points)
Having Jackie Weaver as their poster girl is about as offensive as it is possible to be!
RAC: Celebrity culture infection not realism for councils from NALC. More interested in the application of woke culture on councils rather than pragmatic factual assistance and support to councils
NALC and SLCC are together to protect Clerks against/from Councillors if not Councils. My Council has published on its website the NALC/SLCC UTube video using JW as the star in her Morgan car. The deception is that it is to encourage new Councillors. The apparent purpose is that Clerks need to have Councillors under their control and the clip claims that JW does have authority. l clicked on the uTube insert and was presented with a string of click-candy including pornography of every description and no tractors. I called for it to be taken down. The Clerk and other Councillors claimed that the Council is not responsible for who clicks on the uTube insert; it was a fun way to attract new Councillors and NALC had spent a lot of money on it. With malice, a Councillor and former Clerk stated that uTube algorithms including everything Google only put up what it decides a particular user wants to see. The inference was clear that it is me who indulges in pornography, bestiality etc. I do not use uTube and do not have an account nor do I use my computer or Google for accessing such material. The others, including the antagonistic Clerk, gleefully stated what they receive from clicking on the uTube insert - baking, knitting, cooking etc. The Councillor leading then pointed at me and demanded I should stand down as a Councillor because I was a disgrace. There is of course a history to this as I am the only elected Councillor of 7 and the Clerk has resigned twice blaming me but remains in post. More if you want it.
0 votes
Most councillors on my council had no idea what an LTN was. When I questioned the dubious actions of the clerk and chair citing an LTN advising against what they were saying/doing, I was told that my LTN was out of date and so didn't apply (I had found a 2016 version of LTN 5 on another Parish Council's website). I tried to go through my CALC who'd only provide a link to the password protected page on NALC. Obviously the clerk refused to give me the username and password and refused to look the matter up. If it hadn't have been for a very kind fellow councillor on this site who gave me a copy of the most recent version, my council could have been in very hot water, wasting £1000s of public money.

Thankfully, the chair, vice chair and clerk all resigned, but it is was with no thanks to NALC or the CALC. Has anyone ever heard back from NALC after phoning them? I've only tried twice, but never had a call back. Absolutely useless association AFAIC with no aim but to suck funds from parish councils.
by (990 points)

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