THE delivery of an independent report into the treatment of council whistleblower Martin Morton has been delayed until July.

A full inquiry into issues surrounding Mr Morton's revelations of a so-called "special charging" policy of vulnerable adults living in council care has been ongoing since last summer.

The report was expected to be finished by the end of last month.

Former leader of the council Jeff Green, who commissioned the inquiry, said today he was "shocked and horrified" at the hold up.

The overcharging policy only came to light when Mr Morton decided to blow the whistle on adult social services, where he was a manager.

He was paid £45,000 to leave the service and keep quiet. Instead, in November of 2008, he approached the Globe and we helped him tell his story.

Some 14 months later, in January 2010, council cabinet agreed to repay almost a quarter-of-a-million pounds to 16 elderly and vulnerable people living in homes at Bermuda Road, Curlew Way and Edgehill Road, all in Moreton.

They had been systematically overcharged by social services for their accommodation over a seven-year span.

Ordering the review into the scandal was the first major decision made by Cllr Green when he took control of the council last May.

He believed there were several important questions still to be resolved.

He said: “I was given absolute assurances this report would be published by the end of May at the latest.

"I am shocked and horrified this has not happened.

"I will be making immediate inquiries with our chief executive to discover the reason.

"My concern is that this is becoming like the Sue Charteris library closures report*. This was only ever seen by a small group of councillors and selected chief officers.

"I just hope that pressure is not being applied from the town hall to 'challenge' any of the findings.

"But I get a strong feeling of 'Here we go again.'"

Earlier this year after a confidential report into allegations Mr Morton had been bullied out of his job, Cllr Green made an unprecedented apology on behalf of the authority for its "ripping off" of vulnerable people in care.

He also promised swift disciplinary action against those responsible for the bullying and offered Mr Morton his job back.

The investigation has been conducted by Anna Klonowski, a public sector professional with more than 20 years' experience.

A council spokeswoman said their understanding was that no deadline for the report was ever in place.

*In 2009, a draft copy of inquiry inspector Sue Charteris' report into the planned closure of 11 libraries became mired in controversy when it was sent to Wallasey Town Hall for "fact checking" before publication.

Its contents were kept secret, with opposition councillors banned from reading it. Click the link below for our story from the time.