Thursday this week sees the council meeting to set the budget for the coming year but also to try and get council agreement on other elements of the flawed Service Choices process for future years. The stakes could not be higher.
The council administration putting forward these fundamentally unfair and damaging proposals are also the same people who seem to have no interest in the things that go wrong in this council. Michael Russell has today put a very succinct post on Blipfoto which is well worth a read at this link:
Some weeks ago I had a post on this blog that outlined some other financial failures and I provided an edited copy of an email sent to all councillors. The leader and his depute, Dick Walsh and Ellen Morton have not replied to any of it. I am truly astounded at what I call The Argyll & Bute Way: ignore a problem or something you don’t like and maybe it will disappear. That’s what this pair do all the time and they are not the only ones. The blog I refer to is at this link:
I can now say that the £1.2m burn of council cash referred to in the above was/will be by the Employability Team since 2011 when Ellen Morton chaired a meeting that allowed the team to expand geographically. It had been a very successful operation until then but the geographic expansion was its downfall. The reason I can identify this now is because they refer in the publicly available budget papers to the £456,000 bailout they approved for the team in November. Yes, half a million pounds but the total will be £1.2m by the time the team is wound up.
Alan Stewart has also found out about the huge cost of external legal advice referred to in Michael’s Blipfoto post. Despite having 8 lawyers, they spend close to £150,000 of your money and mine every year on external legal advice.
Read all of this please and then ask yourself if you really want Cllrs Walsh and Morton handling your council’s funds. I know what my view is.
I hope to publish the final version of the Reform Group’s budget on Wednesday. There will be changes from what was published on this blog at the link below but the broad thrust of it will not alter.