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Bonkers Blog May 2011

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27 May - A family affair - slide scrollbar to reveal

The original announcement

Bexley borough seems to be nicely stitched up by its ruling classes; they are not only able to arrange anything they like to favour themselves whether it be amending their Constitution to shield themselves from questions, call on the police to crack down on anyone that dares to criticize them, or place themselves in positions where taxpayers money just happens, by an enormous fluke which they are powerless to avoid, to rain down on them. So you have councillor Davey picking up cash from the health authority and freely indulging his love of art as chairman of the council funded Bexley Arts council. No protest at Craske’s vandalism of the William Morris fountain though. Councillor John Waters just happens to be on the receiving end of the the Early Years grants doled out by Bexley council on behalf of the government. Lucky him.

Some councillors have as many as 20 appointments to local bodies, not all paid by any means but presumably they help raise profiles; though how much time is available for each after attending to a full time job and the occasional council meeting is questionable. Some of the councillors’ full time jobs are quite impressive and so are their property portfolios.

There are 53 Conservative councillors in Bexley, twelve being married couples, so that makes 47 houses you might think. The true figure doesn’t quite reach twice that but 80 is close. Councillor couples are both councillors and both may exercise the power that goes with the position but other spouses are not without influence. Councillor Read has a wife who works in the council office with power to refuse questions. It may not be illegal but like everything about Bexley council it can at best be described as dubious.

Everyone who has perused The Guardian’s job vacancy columns is familiar with the non-jobs that councils employ. The biodiversity officers, the people I’ve watched measure advertisements in shops etc. I’m not sure if a PE and Sports Liaison Officer falls into the non-job category but Bexley has one. We can’t afford to get disabled kids to school and we can’t afford to fully fund disabled adults either but we can apparently afford to employ someone to assist the able-bodied with their pursuits. More than a week ago the Bexley Times did a pretty comprehensive report on Bexley’s PE and Sports Liaison Officer and not being a sporty person myself I could barely make head nor tail of it; except for one thing. The holder of the post is Julie Fuller of Chessington Avenue. The address sounded familiar and a quick check showed my memory has not entirely gone yet. Guess who else lives at that address? Play with the photo’s scrollbar and a familiar face will appear. Still not sure? Then click here. (Apologies to Internet Explorer 6 users. You won’t have got the scroll bar but trying to cater for a defective non-compliant browser dating from August 2001 is a waste of time.)

As I’ve said, nothing illegal, but everywhere we have councillors and their families neatly placed in a favourable position and on a nice little earner; except councillor Katie Perrior of course who “sadly isn’t rich”. Yeah right, company director and co-founder of the public relations company that ran Boris Johnson’s mayoral campaign and she cannot survive without her £22,615 councillor’s allowance.


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