|Link to The Guardian|
"...It's striking that the Local Government Association decided not to highlight how freedom of information has held town halls to account by exposing waste and maladministration. The Barnet bloggers showed how the council used an unlicensed security firm to covertly film residents. Perry Austin-Clarke, editor of the 'Bradford Telegraph & Argus, used FOI to discover the council was spending £500,000 on mobile phones bills. It subsequently fell to £100,000.
"A series of FOI requests by the Daily Telegraph exposed how local authorities spent £2m on hotel bills over just 3 years – including stays at the Four Seasons in New York, the Pan Pacific in Singapore, and the Athens Hilton. The beauty of FOI is that it gives the public the same powers of inquiry as elected councillors."