Sunday, February 10, 2008

The good, the bad and the CPA team

So the inspectors have left the building. Friday saw KCC's Seminar Lecture Theatre packed to the rafters with staff and councillors to hear the Audit Commission's seven-strong team give us their feedback on three weeks of inspection.

We heard that they felt KCC was "unusually outward-looking"; that we sought "the wider well-being of the community - often beyond the traditional sphere" and how we had an "open staff culture"; "empowered managers" and "high calibre Cabinet, managers and staff".

But we also heard we could be "dazzled by our own brilliance"; that we should "lighten up" and "develop modern community leadership".

The presentation of findings lasted for over an hour, and left us feeling quietly hopeful that we can retain our four star excellent status. The inspectors will now write up their report and defend it against a Consistency Panel" in March, before giving KCC a chance to appeal against anything, before which the star rating will be published in early June.

For the sake of our staff, our Members, and the Kent taxpayer who receives our services, I sincerely hope we keep our four stars, but learn from the experience and make the County Council even better.

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