Research by Stockport’s Liberal Democrat councillors has revealed that there has been a dramatic increase in the number of complaints upheld by the Local Government Ombudsman against Stockport Council, over the last three years since Labour came to power. The number of cases regarding SMBC considered by the Ombudsman over the period 2016-2019 has increased by 20% but the number of complaints upheld has increased by a massive 100% according to figures obtained by the Liberal Democrats.
Leader of the Liberal Democrats at Stockport Town Hall, Cllr Mark Hunter, said “These figures show a worrying trend of not just more complaints from local residents to the Ombudsman but – significantly – many more of them are being upheld. As the highly regarded independent referee of disputes between the Council and residents, going to the Ombudsman is often the final sanction a resident can take. For the Council to be losing so many of these cases suggests something is very wrong. Looking back over the figures for the previous three years of Liberal Democrat leadership, 2013-2016, Stockport Council had only one in ten complaints upheld against it. In the three years of Labour leadership the figures show that now over one in five cases are successful against the Council.
“From my questions at the full Council meeting yesterday evening it seems Labour are once again asleep at the wheel when they should be investigating the reasons why complaints have soared and why the Council is losing so many of the appeals to the Ombudsman. Liberal Democrats demand better, Stockport residents deserve better, and we are asking for an urgent review of just exactly how these complaints are dealt with by Stockport Council”.