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Ex Chief Exec - Dave Clark


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I will re-post a quotation from the Code of Conduct for Councillors


Councillors should not raise matters relating to the conduct or capability of employees in public. Employees must accord to councillors the respect and courtesy due to them in their various roles. There are provisions in the Code of Conduct for Employees about speaking in public and employees should observe them.


That is why I agree with Jimmy Parks.


I ask yet again. How come Wills get pillioried because of the above "rules", but Shannon does not?


As I have stated and asked repeatedly, but never have had any response to. Shannon was the one who first named Clark publically, and not only him, but accused the entire council collectively of being in cahoots with him over the Assistant CE post deletion.


Where was Shannon's "respect and courtsey" for all Councillors then? Does the Code of Conduct for Employees say its okay to publically accuse a fellow employee of dirty deeds? I don't have access to a copy of that code right now to check it, but I would very surprised if publically accusing a fellow employee of alleged illegal actions is sanctioned within it.


Initially Wills was simply commenting on and responding to what Shannon had put in the public domain. That does not come under and definition of "raising" that I am familiar with. Ironically, given how he's being run down over it now, he was jumping to the defense of, and offering assistance to the underdog he believed wronged.


Certainly, as I've also said before, Wills would probably have been wiser to have curtailed his public statements once it became apparent the Shannon issue was but a side one, and the real issue was Clark. However, I can also see that being aware of that transition, while relatively obvious with hindsight, wasn't so obvious as it occured, especially the way Police investigations and Official Complaints were flying around like confetti at a wedding.


In any case, it is arguable that once put out there by Shannon, everything that has followed on from there is a direct result of Shannon's act, and nothing has been "raised" by anyone after him. It is simply an inevitable unravelling that had to happen once Shannon removed that one little piece.

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Alistair Carmichael is very scathing of the way the council has been run -


“If you think you can change that by putting in a new chief executive and changing nothing else then you fail to understand the true nature of the gravity of the problem"


There speaks a man who has a good grasp of the problem.



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Councillors should not raise matters relating to the conduct or capability of employees in public.


But elected members of the public may they be councillors or responsible in different functions are absolutely entitled to question "matters relating to the conduct or capability of employees in public" - the more when these "employees" under discussion are executive ranks.


Who else should do?

(... and yes, Brian has to stick to his rules! - it is his job and probably not only short sighted solidarity with a befriended former 'shop steward' ... :wink: )


DC is / was not a minor clerk but someone with political responsibilities. We may like it or not but some major media like the BBC have it as "[he/DC] has been on extended leave after claims he threatened a colleague".


All the rest is some kind of cowardliness and some kind of hiding behind 'staff affairs' where a clear word and decisions were rightfully expected by the public.

(... and I am abolutely not sure whether or not a political figure like Tavish would expect and publicly demand to publish the detailed figures, if it would be that clear breach of Scottish laws, some folks are trying to tell us ... )


Come on folks ...

- on Feb 5th 2009 the resigning of Morgan Goodlad was announced ...

- on 26-Feb-2009 DC had his fab website registered telling the public or just the cooncillors about his unique experiences ...

- on May 20th 2009 DC was announced the new Chief Executive ...


honi soi qui mal y pense ... :roll:


The fish was stinking right from the beginning ...

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Please forgive my monumental absent-mindedness, but what complaint did Councillor Wills raise in public?


He has been RAISING stuff in public ever since this whole sorry debacle started. Where have you been hiding these past few months?


You'd better come with the list then, as the only thing I can recall that he "raised" concerning Clark directly, as per known and accepted definitions, is the infamous phonecall. Which given that he made a Police report over it, and that investigation is allegedly still ongoing, arguably put it in the public domain anyway.


Certainly he's "raised" an amount of issues in public during that time, but of those I can recall off the top of the head they were not complaints against Clark per se, rather they were complaints against the council for alleged procedural irregularities and failures.

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The quote below is the final paragraph in a bulletin issued by Sandy Cluness to all council employees yesterday in a pathetic attempt to explain why the council had to take the action it did in making the obscene payoff too David Clark.


Employees are reminded that they should not make any derogatory, adverse,

untrue or misleading statement in public, whether verbal, in writing, online

and/or using any other media, to the media or to any other person about Mr

Clark or his performance in the role of Chief Executive. Nor should they do

or say anything about Mr Clark which shall, or may, bring either Mr Clark or

the Council, its employees, officers, members, or Councillors, into


"my emphasis"


Why?....They have both managed well enough by themselves without any help from others.


On a more serious note, this statement has implications for council employees rights to freedom of expression and has the potential for a Macarthyite witch hunt. What if Jim is suspected of speaking out of turn after a few drinks with his pals on a night out, or Jane gets a letter published which falls foul of the "or may" part of the statement just because someone in her office doesn't like her and lodges a complaint against her.


Sandy Cluness for Joe Macarthy.

Why not. There will be plenty more twists and turns in this saga before it ends........if it ever does.


I don't work for the council so I don't expect that I will be appearing at the hearings.

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It's not online, but the Shetland Times reported that Dr Wills had sent a critical email to the Head of Planning (re the site of the new AHS) which he then copied to the media.



Sorry, I can't remember the date. Dr Wills still acts like a journalist and has not kept to the code of conduct.


IMHO, of course.


Time will tell.

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I've just had a look through parts of the Shetland News site.


I'll let Dr. Wills speak for himself.


My criticisms of Mr Clark include the following:


1. His unauthorised deletion of the post of Assistant Chief Executive, without referring the matter to the full council for decision. This was a clear breach of employment law and of the council’s agreements with the staff trade unions.


2. The unreasonable pressure exerted on planning and roads staff to produce the answers required, to ignore objections and to meet unreasonable deadlines in connection with the planning application for the new Anderson High School at Knab Road.


3. His premature announcement that he had appointed a former business associate to co-ordinate the independent review into the new AHS project, before elected council office-bearers had time to meet the person concerned or to review his less than impressive professional credentials.


4. His unauthorised publication of private letters from teachers to Cllr. Gussie Angus.


5. His inadequate, incomplete and misleading covering report on the AHS review to the Services Committee on 3rd September, which over-estimated the costs of the alternative site at Lower Staney Hill.


6. The scandalous drinking session with a crony in his office all afternoon on 3rd September, during which time other council staff had urgent business to discuss with him, arising from the committee decision that morning.


Source .

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jz,think he critised the speed planning had dealt with application for ahs.

how does critiscising head of planning in public entitle chief exec to pay off?


He should not have criticised a council employee in public. The code of conduct is quite clear on this. As Wills went public with his criticisms of David Clark, Clark was able to claim that he was abused. If the criticism had been made internally Clark would have less grounds for compensation in his pay-off. As it was, Sandy Cluness, Josie Simpson, Hazel Sutherland and Jan Riise jointly with Clark made a complaint (to the Standards' Commision, I think).


If these leading councillors and high-up officers think Clark had been "hard- done by", it would have been very difficult to argue otherwise in an employment tribunal.


I not saying I agree he should have got such high compensation, just it was inevitable after the way Dr Wills had publicly pilloried DC.

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Which one of the FACTS you stated there do you not like, jz?


Employees are reminded that they should not make any derogatory, adverse, untrue or misleading statement in public, whether verbal, in writing, online and/or using any other media


I see absolutely nothing in your quote that falls into any of the categories above.


I am proud that mighty leaders of the Mighty Shetland Banana Republic are so keen on the supression of information, opinion and comment and following precisely the instructions included in "The Complete Dictator and Totalitarian Manual".


President Mugabe would be proud of your efforts! :roll:

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^^^ (a few posts up the way)


I appreciate, jz, that you're much more likely to have a better grasp of the legalese side of things, however I'd contend that since, as far as I'm aware, all of those issues were already in the public domain, Cllr Wills' publication of them in that particular correspondence does not constitute raising them in public.


I'd agree that Dr Wills' apparent public criticism of the former Chief Executive appears to breach the Councillors' Code of Conduct...but I also feel he'd have a much better grasp of it than I and believe that he wouldn't intentionally do anything to harm Shetland.

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@ North It was this part

Councillors should not raise matters relating to the conduct or capability of employees in public.

I was referring to. I could have been more specific in the quote, but I didn't want to take it out of context.


@MiM I actually think that Dr Wills is one of the most through and hard working of councillors, and his heart is in the right place. He just goes about things the wrong way, as if he was still a journalist and not an elected representative with responsibilities to those employed by the SIC.

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