SOME independent councillors in Wilmslow are trying to change the way our secretive and autocratic Cheshire East Council operates into something properly democratic.

The closed ‘cabinet’ system of running things has brought us nothing but huge wastes of our money and disgrace. Here are some of the reasons we should all sign their petition to help change the way our county is run: 2011. The Lyme Green waste centre scandal. After £1m is paid to contractors, the project is abandoned. The council broke its own regulations and EU rules on contracts. £225,000 is spent on a report, which CEC tries to prevent becoming public.

2012/13. Three senior officers leave the council as a result, including the chief finance officer.

She is paid £45,000 after being recommended for dismissal.

2015. Council Leader Michael Jones resigns after contracts worth £150,000 are awarded to his physio.

This matter is now with the Director of Public Prosecutions.

2016. CEC pay care-workers less than the minimum wage.

2017. A Local Government survey reveals a culture of bullying.

2017. CEC deliberately falsified air pollution data to permit developments.

Three CEC officers are also suspended – CEO Mike Suarez, COO Peter Bates and legal director Bill Norman.

Mr Suarez was suspended on full pay for 15 months. A hearing into his case was finally arranged – only for Mr Suarez to resign two days beforehand.

The investigation into officer misconduct at CEC has cost taxpayers around £1m. There are currently seven police investigations into CEC. CEC has squandered millions of our money.

How many roads could that have re-surfaced and children’s centres or libraries kept open?

Please sign the petition at Geoff Holman, Knutsford