Friday, 11 February 2011

Robertson on Pickles

The letter to the Times is still causing ripples and today the Southport Visiter carries the story:

SEFTON Council’s leader has launched a stinging attack on Communities Secretary Eric Pickles over the £68m cuts facing the borough.

Cllr Tony Robertson was among 88 local Lib Dem heads, including 17 town hall leaders, to sign an open letter warning of the pace of the Government's spending cuts.
They accused Mr Pickles of "letting down" users of council services and refusing to work with councillors.

In the letter, which lays bare the depth of frustration felt by a highly influential section of the Lib Dems, the signatories accused Mr Pickles of being "unwilling to lead the change that's so desperately needed".

Cllr Robertson said he fully accepted the need to reduce the country’s deficit and Sefton’s role in that.
But the Maghull councillor said Mr Pickles’s decision to ‘front-load’ savings had forced councils to rush into making “gut-wrenching decisions”.

Cllr Robertson said: “The front-loading means that we’re making savings at an incredibly fast pace which doesn’t allow us to change the organisation to best harvest savings.

“The real concern is the way things have been gone about.

“The lack of diplomacy from Eric Pickles and the way he talks about local authorities just makes the whole process a lot worse. His contribution to this issue has just not helped.”

You can read the letter on Richard Kemp's website here

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