Since the 1st April 2006 the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales has had responsibility of investigating complaints against Community and Town Councils in Wales. This responsibility is separate to the Ombudsman’s role in investigating allegations of misconduct against individual councillors and focuses on complaints regarding the standards of services provided by the Council e.g. provision of a community hall, playground, burial ground, public clock. The collation, analysis and resolution of complaints is viewed as an essential element in the efficient administration of Ystradfellte Community Council.
What is a complaint?
This can be a difficult concept to define, but the following is the Public Services Ombudsman’s definition:
“A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction by one or more members of the public about the Council’s action or lack of action or about the standard of a service, whether the action was taken or the service provided by the Council itself or by a person or body acting on behalf of the Council.”
The following however, are not to be regarded as complaints:
An initial request for a service
Complaints about third parties, e.g. about a Community Group for which Ystradfellte Community Council is not responsible.
A request for an explanation of a decision
A representation about a major policy decision e.g. setting the precept