DIARY: Kelly divests himself of vested interests accusations

Eyebrows were raised in public affairs circles last week when the Independent reported that outdoor advertising company The More Group and its French rival Decaux, would be pitching to Islington council officers to win a lucrative bus shelter contract in the borough.

Eyebrows were raised in public affairs circles last week when the

Independent reported that outdoor advertising company The More Group and

its French rival Decaux, would be pitching to Islington council officers

to win a lucrative bus shelter contract in the borough.



Decaux employs Grandfield Public Affairs (GPA) to handle its lobbying

and the director of GPA is none other than deputy leader of Islington

council, Phil Kelly.



But I was reassured to hear that Kelly’s reputation is untarnished: the

pitches were made to council officers - unelected employees in

Islington’s technical and environmental services department, by in-house

Decaux staff.



’Decaux are putting in tenders to local authorities all over the country

all the time,’ explained Kelly. ’We were not involved in making the

tender presentation. My interest is known at the council’. He added that

the final decision as to which company wins the tender would be decided

by a committee of councillors of which he is not a member.



That’s all right then.



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