Friday, 9 November 2007

£650k squandered

We thought it was time to write to the papers to put on the public record our concerns that the Tories and Labour had squandered £650k of public money in a private meeting of the council. For the life of me I don't see why they kicked the press and public out. There can hardly be a member of the public who if consulted on spending tax payers money would suggest keeping staff who our Chief Officer believes to be surplus and getting rid of one we do need and replace him with a higher paid officer. They will also be gobsmacked that they did it without any proper papers or understanding of the financial information. Indeed I suspect that the scrappy bits of financial information they did have failed to specify anything like the full cost.

Sefton Council Group of Liberal Democrat Councillors

c/o Southport Town Hall, Lord Street, Southport. Tel 0151 934 2252

5 November 2007

Dear Editor

We write to express our great concern about recent decisions taken by the Labour and Conservative members on Sefton Council that will lead to the wasting of approximately £650,000 of Council Tax-payers’ money.

At the Council meeting held on 25 October, Liberal Democrats, although the largest party on Sefton Council, were repeatedly outvoted by the other two parties in our efforts to save money by further slimming down the Council’s senior management bureaucracy.

We believe that those decisions were profoundly wrong.

The leaderships of the Conservative and Labour Groups need to explain why they consider it correct to waste a combined total of well over £1/2 million in two related decisions:

Making the post of Chief Executive “redundant”, at considerable cost, and then immediately refilling the supposedly redundant post at significant additional expense.

Not deleting three posts within the Council’s senior bureaucracy, proposed as no longer needed in a report to the Cabinet meeting held on 4 October.

The financial consequences for Council Tax-payers in our area of these hasty and ill thought out decisions are enormous. We believe that residents should be as concerned as are Liberal Democrat councillors.

ours sincerely,

Councillor Tony Robertson

Councillor Tony Robertson (Leader)

Councillor David Tattersall (Deputy Leader)

Councillor Andrew Blackburn

Councillor Mike Booth

Councillor Iain Brodie Browne

Councillor Jack Colbert

Councillor Roy Connell

Councillor Maureen Fearn

Councillor Robbie Fenton

Councillor Anthony Hill

Councillor Peter Hough

Councillor Geoff Howe

Councillor Sue McGuire

Councillor Carmel Preston

Councillor Brian Rimmer

Councillor David Rimmer

Councillor Simon Shaw

Councillor David Sumner

Councillor Andrew Tonkiss

Councillor Fred Weavers