Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Let Them Eat Cake

Experts predict that Councils across the country are going to have to cut their budgets by 20-25% over the next 4 years. Sutton will not escape the difficult times ahead. There will be some tough decisions ahead.

The new LibDem administration took their first decision within days of resuming power. As is often the way, they got an unpopular decision through early whilst everyone was watching the coalition Goverment in Westminster come together. They have now increased their Cabinet from eight councillors to ten. This means that their chosen few collect an extra £34,440 between them in allowances. This is in stark contrast with the Conservative plans to reduce the cost of councillors by £13,000. This leaves Sutton taxpayers more than £47,000 out of pocket each year. That's about 50p from every household, two new teachers or resurfacing 1 mile of road.

Just last month, it was revealed that Sutton Council was keen to be a pilot area for the previous Government's plan to introduce bin taxes for people who they decide do not recycle enough. A second attempt to introduce fortnightly bin collection is being planned for next year. It's a shame for all of us that rather than learn some humility, the large majority acheived by the Liberal Democrats has emboldened them to ensure that residents take the brunt of the cuts. They are happier to cut jobs and services as long as they look after themselves.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

That's why my crosses went in the conservative box, shame there weren't more Sutton residents like me!

Anonymous said...
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Mary Hinge said...

Anonymous. How courageous not to show your names. Failed "Tory" candidates I guess. Only reason the "Tories" lost, and lost deservedly heavily, was that they were rumbled. Their manifesto did not add up. You can't promise cuts in taxes and lavish money around at the same time. Hypocrisy was their name of the game. That's why their general election candidates lost as well.

Scully said...

David

We didn't lavish money around. The manifesto was costed in our alternative budget but excluded the 1.75% cut in tax,so there was slack.

The 'deserved' loss has led to an extra £42,000 in the cost of councillors, the spectre of fortnightly bin collections confirmed by a senior council representative that you will know and only the Conservative government stopping the LibDems from introducing bin taxes to charge you even more for waste collection. I'm amazed you can afford another 4 years of a LibDem Council. I can't.

Juliet said...

Mary, not that my name matters but it's Juliet, and I am nothing to do with the conservatives, just a sutton resident who is not impressed with a lib dem council.

David B, CB said...

Paul, I do hope you're going to be able to find time to keep this blog going.

While the local press may claim to call the council to account, it is clear that locally they most certainly do not. The Lib Dems were given an easy ride in advance of the elections (as indeed were the Tories). It was disheartening to see such abject 'journalism'. That said, I don't think it's why you lost.

The Tory group on the council may now only be a rump, but what defines our democracy is the hunger for opposition and a differing view, as well as the ongoing need to find ways to ensure the council justifies its actions.

Elections may be four years away but please do use your contacts and influence help to keep up the crusade to call to account all our elected representatives. I know if will be difficult working from outside the chamber, but times will change as the coalition inevitably crumbles.

I don't always agree with your views, but we need more like you, not fewer.