Belfast City Council are commissioning a piece of public art for the City Hall “which reflects the Irish history and heritage of many of [its] citizens”. But that’s not the story.
At the back of the issued Expression of Interest / Quotation document (which outlines the specification and contract conditions) there is an appendix with a form that applicants must fill out.
Applicants must promise not to canvas or solicit support for their application from councillors (“members”) or council staff.
A CERTIFICATE AS TO CANVASSING
I/We hereby certify that I/we have not and will not canvas or solicit any Member, Officer or Employee of the Council in connection with the preparation, submission and evaluation of this Expression of Interest or award or proposed award of the Contract and that to the best of my/our knowledge and belief, no person employed by me/us or acting on my/our behalf has done, or will do, such an act.
I/We hereby certify that, to the best of my/our knowledge and belief, no person who is a Councillor, Officer, Servant or Agent has any direct or indirect interest, in or connection with, the Organisation.
Pity Castlereagh Borough Council didn’t have that in place when they were tendering for the Lock Keeper’s Inn café. Or maybe they did?
Someone out there with a copy of the Expression of Interest advertised in January 2008 and re-advertised later that summer may be able to comment further. But a cursory read through the Castlereagh minutes doesn’t point to anything more elaborate or lengthy than a simple advert in a newspaper. And I’m not about to go and request a copy of the Expression of Interest just to prove a point!