Full Council Meeting
On Wednesday saw the Full Council meeting. As the Town Hall is being maintained in Wigan we had the meeting in Leigh old town hall.
Not too much on but we had the issue of Ashfield on the agenda. Labour was rattling the same just calling me for wasting money, so they say. This was about these figures
Inspector’s fee £8,475
Objector’s barristers fee £14,500
Objector’s Solicitor time cost £6,400 (approximately 100 hours work)
Registration Authority Solicitor time cost £6,000 (approximately 90 hours work)
Admin (Bundle Costs) £450
Press Notice of Inquiry £200
Labour can't simply understand that it was the independent barrister who said that there needed to be an inquiry, not me. He said based on the strong evidence that we had submitted.
Now the figures in red are the ones that are not really relevant. The two solicitors cost are full time solicitors for the Council and therefore would get paid anyway, even if the inquiry hadn't gone ahead. Also the Council have inflated their figures by 100%.
Next the Council chose themselves to go and hire a barrister at the cost of £15,000. As we can see they have their own solicitors so why couldn't they get one of their own, rather than hiring someone from London, that;s right London? Admin bundle again is a full time staff member and I have heard it was a YTS person that did it any way.
So the only real cost of Ashfield Inquiry was £8,675. This is for the inspector's fee plus the press notice. These cost are outside the council's control. But you can see how the council and Labour have inflated and misrepresented figures for their own propaganda.
For me I will not take any lessons of Labour about how to spend tax payers money. Especially as they spent over £70,000 just a few weeks before closing Mere Oaks on a new pool and flags. What was interesting was as soon as I mentioned Mere Oaks example I got the Labour Leader rattled, so much so he jumped to his feet shouting closing Mere oaks was the Best decision the Council has made. Fancy such arrogance. Over 27,000 signatures and other support from Wigan People and Labour leader doesn't care about the excellence support and education that school gave to some of the most vulnerable children in our society. Now out of all the decisions the Council have made I would have thought the Labour leader would be shouting another example of the best decision ever, but it just proves it was his personal vendetta against the school was the reason why it closed.
Another debate was Labour are upset that the Government are changing the rules on Strike. The Labour Leader said it was like going back to the 80's. Given that Labour has elected a MP who still lives in the 80's then it is probably quite appropriate that they do this then.
For me if someone has a legitimate right to strike fair enough but don't block others that do want to work from working. A Labour Cllr Lol Hunt who has in the passed called a Tory MP a Nazi said that he was pleased that the french were involved in a public project as they support unions. Well I wonder if he likes them when they are blocking the ports and stopping business and holiday makers getting across the channel each summer?
This morning I had the great privilege of laying the wreath at Standish Cenotaph. It was good to see so many turned out, whilst it was threatening to rain. It is important that we do remember the service men and women past and present and the service and scarify that they give us. From me to them and on behalf of the people of Standish - Thank you.