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Bonkers Blog November 2011

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18 November (Part 2) - Just a windbag

Grant ShappsYou can’t go more than two or three days without reading in a newspaper criticism of local authorities by government ministers. Yesterday’s Telegraph was typical; it reported local government minister Grant Shapps saying councils that cut services have poor leadership. “Well managed councils can do more for less through embracing transparency and more joint working. Councils which hike charges are guilty of poor leadership and poor management.” More transparency? He’s not been to Bexley has he? Hiking charges equals poor leadership and poor management? Ah, maybe he has.

These politicians are all hot air, Eric Pickles in particular is, to use the vernacular, all piss and wind. Just a week ago when asked to be a little more specific than sound bites for the media, he said ,“As each local authority is an individual employer in its own right it is for them to determine how best to organise and pay their workforces.” He goes on to say that “an authority can reject your petition if it regards it as inappropriate.” So a petition that follows Eric Pickles advice can be deemed inappropriate because it follows his advice. This is not me being mischievous with some generic statement about petitions, those quotations come from Mr. Pickles in a letter to Elwyn Bryant, the organiser of the Bexley petition. You can see how close to Bexley’s unsavoury crew Eric Pickles is in the photograph below. Scheming cohorts do you think?

I never did believe that Elwyn’s petition would be anything more than an opportunity to embarrass Bexley council as much as we can. It will be yet another example of their commitment to lining their own pockets at the expense of residents. Elwyn is not of course devoid of ideas on how to maximise that embarrassment and is grateful for those received from Bonkers readers after he passed the 2,000 barrier yesterday. If you have any more bright ideas I’ll pass them on to him.

Councilwatch on the same subject.


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