Long: Belfast City Council must be more open and transparent

Councillor Michael Long has called on all parties to unite behind the Alliance Party in backing greater openness and transparency measures in Belfast City Council.

The Alliance Group Leader was speaking ahead of Friday’s Strategic, Policy and Resources Committee meeting, where a potential move to audio record all committee meetings is due to be discussed – a move Mr Long described as ‘essential’.

Councillor Michael Long said: “Alliance will continue to stand up for openness and transparency and will fight for ratepayers to have access to all decisions affecting them.

“It was with this aim that Alliance secured an amendment as part of local government reform that ensured all full Council meetings are recorded and available on the Council’s website – but this does not include committee meetings.

“As Councillors everything we do affects the ratepayers and it is only fair they have access to any decisions taken – especially with the new Councils having acquired a number of new powers, including planning. There is no reason why Belfast City Council shouldn’t audio record every committee meeting.

“I would urge all parties to back plans to audio record all committee meetings, showing again that Belfast City Council will lead the way when it comes to ending back room dealings for good.”

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