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(en) Britain, AF, The Bristoloan V4 ,#2 April 2013 - Council: ‘we don’t know’ - Full cost of cuts consultants lost in accounts black hole

Date Thu, 18 Apr 2013 15:30:35 +0300

Bristol City Council’s cuts-crazed senior officers don’t know how many consultants they employ, or how much this small army of freelancers undertaking ‘reviews’, and slashing services – each on up to £600 per day plus expenses – costs the authority. ---- Questions about this were raised at a recent full council meeting by trade unionists concerned about the effects of dumping properly-employed BCC staff for reasons of cost - whilst at the same time spending far more cash per head on these hatchets-for-hire. In typical fashion, HIS ROYAL GEORGENESS tried to deflect criticism by boasting that to save money he has brought his own business chums onboard as unpaid consultants, but his face went as red as his trousers when pushed for a categorical assurance that these ‘friends’ of his would not be involved in procurement - either now or in the future.

After wriggling around under a barrage of
questions about how utilising these faceless suits
would ‘enhance democracy in Bristol’ - one of his
manifesto pledges, lest we forget - Georgie went
nuts, claiming that this was blatant politicking,
and promptly changed the subject.

So we are none the wiser about the fire sale
sweeping through Bristol’s public resources like
libraries, day centres, play areas, residential homes
and other key amenities - other than it is clear that
George thinks George knows best, and the rest of
us should keep our noses out.

The jobs that are lost when council workers are
‘downsized’ have a direct effect on our local econ-
omy, as families are made more reliant on benefits,
and have less local spending power. Most of the
consultants don’t even live in Bristol, and even
more worryingly, are completely unaccountable
for their actions – as Gorgeous George’s outburst
when questioned showed.

Six months of cutting services down to the
bone, and it is evident that the review is not
working for the people of Bristol – even if it does
earn the consultants a few quid to take home to
their out-of-town country houses.

But how can senior officers in Bristol honestly not
know how much is spent on these social parasites,
whilst singing the praises of backroom cuts?
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