When Carmarthenshire County Council announced the other day that its chief executive, Mr Mark James CBE, had applied to join the council's severance scheme, the press office was keen to stress that it would be business as usual in County Hall.
Rhodri Glyn Thomas, the Plaid AM for Carmarthenshire East and Dinefwr, has called on the council to reject Mr James's application for what would be a huge payout, pointing out that the unlawful payments approved and subsequently defended by the ruling Labour/Independent administration in County Hall have brought public trust and confidence in the council to an all-time low.
The chief executive is clearly determined to extract as much money from the council as possible as he heads off for new pastures, and despite saying previously that he was not pursuing the libel case against Jacqui Thompson for the money, he is using his legal hounds to seize the £30,000 plus interest in damages which was awarded against her.
It really is business as usual.
The main item on the agenda for next week's meeting of the full council is a proposal by council leader Kevin Madge to ban the sale of Chinese lanterns from council property. How many Chinese lanterns have been sold in County Hall or other council premises? None in all likelihood, and the council almost certainly has powers to implement a ban without wasting time debating what is little more than an empty gesture. But that's Kevin Madge's main priority this month.
This month's agenda includes another crop of questions from councillors airing a wide range of concerns. As we saw last month, the Chief Executive and the Monitoring Officer were adamant that because the section of the constitution which allows councillors to ask questions does not mention follow-up questions, follow-up questions are not allowed.
The solution to that problem seems to be to wait an entire month to submit a question following up on a question raised the previous month. That is the case with a question concerning the £28,000 spent on the services of Mr Tim Kerr (as in 'car') QC as Kevin Madge sought to justify the unlawful payments to Mr James.
Among other interesting questions is one about air pollution in Llandeilo, another about the chaotic and byzantine new rules for holder of blue parking badges and one about the mysterious member of the Executive Board who apparently believes that the Welsh language could put off foreign investors.
Elephant in the Room
Notably missing from this month's agenda is the long-awaited report by the WLGA Governance Review Panel which was rather vaguely promised to go before councillors and the public in September or October.
A spokesperson for the WLGA told Caebrwyn that there would first be a workshop (closed to the public, of course) to "test draft themes" before the report is finalised. It seems we will have to wait another month to find out what conclusions the panel came to.
Apart from the Chinese lanterns and questions, next week's meeting will "receive" another crop of minutes from various committee meetings.
Among these are a couple of meetings of appointments committees, with the most important being the appointment of Jake Morgan as Director of Social Care, Health and Housing.
Mr Morgan was Head of Children's Services in Carmarthenshire until he left for Pembrokeshire two years ago. There are persistent claims that he was paid a handsome sum as a parting gift before he took up his current duties in Haverfordwest.
In Pembrokeshire Mr Morgan is responsible for a huge portfolio which includes social services, children's services and education.
Prior to his arrival in the Kremlin on the Cleddau, Pembrokeshire County Council was hit by a series of scandals, and at one point its education services were put in special measures. Earlier this year it emerged that there were serious failings in the way the council handled the case of Mik Smith, a paedophile who had been employed in the council's youth services.
The Smith case pre-dated Mr Morgan's appointment, but Cneifiwr has been made aware of two much more recent cases which have occurred during his watch. One involves what looks for all the world like a slick PR cover-up of a serious incident in one of the council's schools, while the other involves an extremely serious and disturbing case of sexual abuse where it is alleged that council officers brought massive pressure to bear on those involved to hush things up.
No doubt we will hear from the usual suspects next week as they welcome home the prodigal son.