I now know you go to an awful lot of meetings with really boring names. I didn’t know councillors had to do quite so much of that, so in a sense I’ve learnt something. It probably wasn’t anything that I wanted to know, but I’m glad you do it well (so long as they’re not a pointless waste of time).
Perhaps I’m less interested in what a councillor does and more interested in what people think a councillor does (the ones that think about it at all) – i.e. why do people get in touch and, from that start point, what can/do you do for them and what can you not? (and as a small aside, or an overview, how much of it is ward-based case work, how much is specific roll and how much is boring bureaucratic meetings). Day in the Life of a Cllr? (or week, since it’s not a day job?)That’s slightly different from the annual report we were sort of talking about on Twitter, although it gives an insight into what a councillor (or this one at least) does. However it doesn’t cover the ‘what’s been achieved for the ward this year’ or ‘what difference have we made?’. I suppose that’s covered by Brightside and the Conservative local leaflety thing that appears about that often (though is certainly not covering a year’s worth of activity). They’re both a bit PR-ish of course, and Brightside isn’t ward-level content (or even CJ-level). For instance, I liked knowing that people have written to councillors about the daft pedestrian crossing at Queenstown Rd / Lavender Hill, which I would never have thought to do even though it’s stupid, and which I only learnt had created correspondence because it was mentioned in the intro at the ward meeting. Also there’s the problem with ward-level councillor / council activity that we have 3 ward councillors so there’s no central source of info and no one way of working. Tricky.It’s also possible that I’ve lost all perspective about ‘what’s interesting to people?’ v. ‘what’s interesting to me?’. I’m sure 90% of people don’t care either way, however I heard the sniffy ‘what do councillors even do?’ view again recently from someone who should know better (compare that to an MP – no one knows what they do either, but we still assume they’re terribly busy), plus there’s the democratic transparency side of it (‘we should be able to find out, on the off-chance that we’re interested’. Another aside – what about voting records? Terribly dull or predictable I’d assume, but does that exist?). I’m drifting back to ‘why doesn’t the council tell people what a council does and how a council works? again, such as ‘we have x number of councillors and this is the structure and these are the committees, and there’s a meeting tonight of all councillors and they’ll be debating these 2 things and you’re welcome to come’, but that should be the council’s responsibility, not any one councillor (or even 10 councillors). So, to conclude, I don’t know, but I’m enjoying your experiments!