COMPLAINTS against borough, parish and town councillors increased in the last year.

A new report detailing grievances against elected representatives showed nine were received in total, compared to six in 2017/2018.

Despite this, councillors were only found to have breached codes of conduct on three occasions.

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One complaint from August 2018 suggested a town councillor was bullying an employee, leading to an investigator finding a conduct breach.

The councillor apologised to the complainant as a result of the ruling.

Another town councillor was found to have treated a disabled child “with disrespect”.

This came after a resident complained about the councillor using a disabled toilet at a public venue, which forced the disabled young person to join a “long queue”, which resulted in “poor consequences”.

Parish councillors were reported for racist social media posts in April 2019, which led to one stepping down and two others apologising to a resident after it was determined conduct codes had been breached.

Six other complaints found councillors did not break conduct roles but officers did give stern warnings to two borough councillors and a town councillor.

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A resident complained to Bracknell Forest Council (BFC) in December 2018 after a councillor was reported standing in a road shouting at the complainant’s wife about where she was parking.

Officers ruled the councillor was not acting as a councillor during the incident and found no breach, but was told to “be careful in future as she had a high profile in the area and it was hard for residents to distinguish whether she was acting in her personal or public capacity.”

In similar cases, a borough councillor and a town councillor were told they had ‘not acted as community leaders’ after they were reported in separate incidents for criticising an officer and alleged bullying respectively.

Other complaints saw a resident complaining about a borough councillor not using a Facebook page properly, another BFC councillor reported for accidentally hitting an employee’s car and a parish councillor called up for the way they treated a resident at a meeting – but no breaches were found for any of these cases.

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The anonymised complaints were listed in BFC’s annual standards report, which is due to be discussed at a borough council meeting this evening (Wednesday, June 27).