Hundreds of thousands of pounds of taxpayers money spent by Haringey Council on HDV with no mandate

8 August 2017

Hundreds of thousands of pounds of taxpayers money spent by Haringey Council on HDV with no mandate from the electorate and no consultation with all residents.

Therefore I have objected to Haringey 2016/17 accounts by writing to BDO LLP their external auditors asking them to write a report in the public interest or to apply for a declaration by the High Court that such expenditure is unlawful. 

Haringey Council plans to hand over £2bn worth of public assets and land to a partnership called the Haringey Deveopment Vehicle (HDV) with a international private developer called Lend Lease.and to dmolish Hornsey Town Hall, large council estates, sell land by evicting play groups and a nursing home. None of that  was mentioned in their manifesto at the 2014 election. 

The have no democratic mandate and they have never consulted all of us residents. 

The Supreme Court decreed that these basic requirements are essential if a consultation process is to have a sensible content in Moseley v Haringey 

*First, that consultation must be at a time when proposals are
still at a formative stage. *

*Second, that the proposer must give sufficient reasons for any
proposal to permit of intelligent consideration and response. *
*Third, that adequate time must be given for consideration and
response and, finally, *

*fourth, that the product of consultation must be
conscientiously taken into account in finalising any statutory
proposals."

Haringey Council has spent hundreds of thousands of pounds on the formative stages of the Haringey Development Vehicle in 2016/17 with no democratic mandate to do it and no
consultation with all of us about parting with such a huge amount of public assets or about any alternatives.

I am suggesting that such expenditure in the 2016/17 accounts is unlawful. 

It is the exceptional magnitude of the £2bn worth of public assets involved which renders it appropriate for the council to consult all Haringey residents as interested parties before authorising any expenditure.  It is a huge project.

Relevant expenditure took place in 2016/17 during the formative stages of the largest scheme of its kind in London.

Another relevant para 24 in Mosely v Haringey is. “But underlying it is also a third purpose, reflective of the democratic principle at the heart of our society. This third purpose is particularly relevant in a case like the present, in which the question was not “Yes or no, should we close this particular care home, this particular school etc?” It was “Required, as we are, to make a taxation-related scheme for application to all the inhabitants of our Borough, should we make one in the terms which we here propose?”

The background to my objection to Haringey Council's 2016/17 accounts is that I was involved in initiating the case of Moseley v Haringey on which it is based and which was the first time the Supreme Court has settled the rules for all local or national governmental consultations. My protests against Haringey's 2012 council tax consultation are cited in the judgement. (paras 22 and 29)  It is also the first time the Supreme Court judgment in October 2014 has been used in a challenge to the external auditor of any councils' accounts. 

 

LAND SEMINAR

Wed, October 18, 2017 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM, Houses of Parliament, Portcullis House, 1 Parliament St, Westminster, London SW1A 2JR View Map

Taxpayers Against Poverty is co-hosting this event with the APPG on Health in All Policies and the APPG on Poverty. It will be Chaired by Debbie Abrahams MP, Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Chair of APPG on Health in all Policies.

The speakers will include Fred Harrison of the Land Research Trust. The people thrive with Land Value Tax in Australia, Denmark, Harrisburg Pennsylvania and other US cities and Hong Kong. The seminar will focus on how it works. Other speakers will be announced.

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