Monday, 20 May 2013

rate payers multi million losses down to poor governance under Sefton Lab new info

Bootle Labour Councillor
Dowd's legacy of extravagant waste
'the lack of prudence beggars belief'-Liverpool Post

No apology, unrepentant and unreconstructed Mark Dowd sits on the Labour front bench at Sefton glowering his defiance. His colleagues protect him and rubbish every report issued that details his outrageous behavior describing them as 'tawdry and rubbish'. How much more is there to come out? When will the Labour party act . 

To date we know about what the Daily Post calls:
...............'the monstrous black elephant that is Merseytravel's monolithic HQ at Mann Island' which it describes as having 'entered the realms of the extravagantly bizarre' and goes on 
'This particular exercise of corporate vanity is gobbling up our money to the tune of £4m a year'  

The full story of how they entered into that mega loss making deal, when they had a perfectly serviceable HQ already, needs to be told. It reveals what happens when decisions are made behind close doors with no opportunity for the proper checks and balances

Now we learn that he was responsible for pouring millions into a loss making exercise like a drunken gambler unable to break his addiction. But it was our money they were pouring down the drain.

We already knew that Dowd refused to put in place the usual opportunities for scrutiny. All issues raised by the Post, and much more besides, were unknown to most elected members

It is symbolic that he had a credit card from Merseytravel that he used for personal expenditure

They wasted Millions on buying steel rail for a tram that was never built-even though their own government indicated as much

At the last minute, and without briefing or reports they scrapped the policy of running and intergrated (rail and stock) railway despite having spent mega sums lobbying the government to be allowed to do so! (co incidentally the NUR were against the idea)

And as the Post revealed last year the Auditor was concerned that they entered into contracts without all the proper procurement procedures being undertaken 

When brave individuals like Andrew Makinson challenged Dowd they got the fully Bootle Bully Boy treatment, by which I mean that (at Merseytravel's expense) top legal firm Hill Dickinson was hired.

When we raised this at Sefton Council, Dowd is a Sefton Councillor, we were treated to rants that dismissed and rubbished all the reports no matter how detailed the reports or qualified the authors. And they kept nominating Dowd to Merseytravel as a Sefton rep and used constitutional maneuvers to prevent us challenging the nomination -even though there was more than enough evidence to question the appointment. Take a look at Dowd expences

Liam Robertson, the man who finally ousted Dowd as Chair, has done a good job. Now he must rise above the tribal party loyalty that has protected Dowd for so long and establish a full independent inquiry. Nothing must be buried or covered up. The police must be be informed and given all the evidence.

Not since the days of Militant have we seen outrageous, high handed behavior like this. Like Militant he got his way because there were no proper challenge to his actions, many of them were unknown to members. The audit and the 151 procedures failed-and if this was due to the way Dowd and Scales ran the organisation-that must be fully established  

The Daily Post report begins:

MORE than £6.5m of taxpayers money was wasted by transport authority Merseytravel on the purchase of a smartcard company that never made any money.
An internal audit has found that Merseytravel’s acquisition of Livesmart delivered “little tangible benefit” to the organisation or the taxpayer.
The Post has seen parts of the audit, which is being kept under wraps by Merseytravel.
The review, which was overseen by St Helens council, said “significant failings in corporate governance” by Merseytravel led to the huge loss.

Read more: Liverpool Daily Post Merseytravel wastes £6.5m of taxpayer’s money on smartcard company - Liverpool News - News - Liverpool Daily Post

1 comment:

  1. Well that's kicked Labour well and truly in the town halls but have you noticed that the BBC has seemingly been reluctant to run with this scandal despite the Liverpool Daily Post giving it just about their most stark front page ever.


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