DCSIMG

Getting value for money from councils

Not being one to make comment on my thoughts I felt after reading the three letters by Thomas Hinchcliffe, Kevin Duggan and Dennis Miller I just had to express my thoughts of support of them all.

Thomas – very good idea but let’s go further...before I do I categorically want to state that I utterly despise Cameron and co, just to be very clear on that one!

However Eric Pickles made the comment very recently that local councils should stop the moaning about saving finances etc and asked the question, why are these same councils paying vastly unrealistic salaries to their chief executives?

I find that I have to agree in that can you explain why the leader of numerous councils remunerate their chief executives more than the Prime Minister? Are they telling you and I that the position of chief executive running a council is more difficult than running the country?

I do not accept that they should be remunerated substantially more than the Prime Minister.

Why not divide the responsibilities of these chief executives with their deputies? Does not the chief executive take the advice from these deputies? Is it not the deputies who, along with their deputies, do the actual work and then the chief executive makes the decision on the basis of the work provided from less senior employees? I think they do! Thomas, that’s an average £180k saved with the redundancy of just one job – a pleasing and impressive result. I wonder what the thousands of newly redundant council workers think?

I also researched three councils, Sheffield, Liverpool and Newcastle, who suprisingly really don’t seem to like Eric Pickles, his criticism relating to public sector financial mis-management and it seems these very councils went to truly extraordinary lengths of writing to the national press saying how difficult it was being a local council in these austere times. Funnily enough the tone of their communication was rather negative towards Mr Pickles.

I think they must have been really rattled or maybe just a litttle worried that here was someone who could substantially challenge these councils on their individual financial (mis)management when you consider the lengths they went to. I wonder How much it cost and where the funding came from? You and I perhaps?

The really interesting thing though was this - there was an article on the financial management of those three councils and guess what? Example after example of various council funded activities that were not value for money.

Dennis – very briefly I could write so much more than you on this one – but well done! Good to see someone with identical views on the NHS, just a pity that the other 99 per cent of Joe Public have not cottoned on to what’s happening to their NHS. Perhaps when the other 99 per cent need the support of the NHS due to a critical illness they might just realise what’s going on. Might be too late then though – as Dennis says, look at what’s happening. Lewisham is just one example - did I mention the debacle of the privatised GP services and the numerous risks involved to patients.

ROBBIE HIRST

Upper Batley Lower Lane

UPPER BATLEY

 

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