Tony Redmond Australia 2005 document 8 March 2005

The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman Nid oedd gan y wybodaeth y gofynnwyd amdani.

Dear Local Government Ombudsmen,

For clarification. Regarding points 12. and 11. in the document copied below, for convenience, from an earlier response.
When (date and location) were the Members of the Commission consulted? When (date and location) was the Finance and Estates Manager consulted?

Yours faithfully,

J Byrne

STUDY TOUR OF AUSTRALIA BY THE CHAIRMAN

1. The Chairman has been approached by CPA Australia to speak at its national conference in May this year. The subject of the presentation is Governance and Governance in Partnerships.

2. He has accepted this invitation but he is also keen, whilst in Australia, to carry out a limited study tour of State Ombudsmen. Following some initial contact in Canada last year Bruce Barbour, Ombudsman for New South Wales, felt that this would be welcomed as an opportunity, in particular, to share experiences in the development of our different schemes.

3. The Chairman has made further contact recently and the suggested itinerary would include visits to Ombudsman offices in Melbourne, Sydney and Perth. The tour would comprise, probably, presentations to office staff together with a discussion about the respective schemes and what can be learnt from each other.

4. The Conference in Melbourne covers three days and the Chairman would anticipate two to three days being spent at each Ombudsman venue. This would allow for some leisure time. The CPA is paying for his accommodation in Melbourne for three to four days. The question is, therefore, what element of the total cost should be borne by the Commission?

5. With regard to travel he intends travelling “Business Class” consistent with a policy agreed by the previous Chairman of the Commission for exceptionally long journeys given that the Chairman will be undertaking a 25 hour journey. Accommodation and subsistence costs would only be relevant where they directly relate to his Ombudsman activity while in Australia.

6. He would seek to organise hotel accommodation which is reasonable and internal flights which are economy only. There may need to be a cap on such expenditure bearing in mind the budget constraints under which the Commission is currently operating.

7. From the Commission's perspective the trip should be of real value in fact finding and promotional terms. On the assumption that the majority of time will be spent on Commission business it would be reasonable to meet all of the return airfare between the UK and Australian arrival / departure ports. Internal flights would also be reimbursable on the basis of `internal group' flights. The Melbourne element should not be excluded as it is part self-development and part promotional. Any incidental transport is claimable when undertaking the speaking arrangements.

8. In so far as the subsistence is concerned; accommodation costs in the locations where the Chairman is undertaking Ombudsman business is reimbursable at the standard single rate. All meals associated with the stays are also reimbursable. When hospitality during such stays is received, there is an entitlement to exercise discretion over the use of the £25 per stay hospitality, where a saving had arisen and in substitution a gift may be purchased for the host.

9. Where possible the Commission would prefer to meet costs directly but it is appreciated that there will be situations where this is not practicable.

10. The Commission is asked to agree the basis for reimbursing costs as set out in this report.

11. The Finance and Estates Manager has been consulted on this proposal and his comments are below:

The Commission has been a member for many years and pays an annual subscription to the International Ombudsman Institute. Membership of that body provides a source of international practice in similar bodies operating across the globe. Apart from the repository of literature that body enables personal contact to be forged and good practice shared. The trip proposed by the Chairman sits within the overall intention of our membership and I, therefore, feel it is a natural extension of that membership.

The purpose of the visit is principally business but there will be an incidental personal element. Appropriate business travel based on the bonafide nature of the trip ought to be recoverable.

However, I recognise the cost of the visit will be material in the context of other similar types of Commission expenditure on this type of activity. And I am mindful of resource constraints in 2005 / 2006.

All personal expenses shall be excluded and any accommodation related expenditure for any deemed element of private use shall also be excluded. Accommodation used will be suitable for the status, nature and practical purpose of each stay. Any premium or upgrades shall be excluded.

12. Members of the Commission have been consulted on the proposed tour.

Nigel Karney

Deputy Chief Executive and Secretary

8 March 2005

To be noted with approval.

Foi Officer, The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman

Dear Mr Byrne

Our ref: CS/10/094

This is to acknowledge receipt of your I request below received on 3 August. I will respond within the 20 working day target (which would be by 1 September 2010) or, if unable to do so, I will write to you again explaining why.

Yours sincerely

Hilary Pook
Communications & Records Manager | DL: 020 7217 4734 |
Local Government Ombudsman's office | 10th Floor |
Millbank Tower | Millbank | London | SW1P 4QP |
www.lgo.org.uk |

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Foi Officer, The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman

1 Atodiad

Dear Mr Byrne

I attach a letter in response to the request below.

Yours sincerely

Hilary Pook
Communications & Records Manager | DL: 020 7217 4734 |
Local Government Ombudsman's office | 10th Floor |
Millbank Tower | Millbank | London | SW1P 4QP |
www.lgo.org.uk |

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir