Comment posted Voting by Integrity? Not in the CondemAll.
Aside from the specific failings of the current administration what Argyll & Bute also needs to rid itself of is the culture of protection that the Administration offer the CMT. Their abject failure to challenge fundamental failings in their performance and loyally push through reports which have been shown to be flawed is symptomatic of a collection of elected members who have either failed miserably to understand what their role is or are happy to support whatever rubbish is put in front of them as long as it serves their self interest.
One of the key roles of a councillor is to challenge and scrutinise the work of the council. During the school closure farce not one of the current administration performed that role, in fact it would be easier to show that they, quite possibly deliberately, ignored it.
Incompetent proposals, riddled with errors, without empirical evidence, legally deficient and what how did the administration deliver their role to challenge and scrutinise? They said ‘aargh bugger it, they’ll do – lets move on with it. 15 months later, after being publicly criticised by the Rural Education Commission, after Cleland Sneddon sat beside Alison Hay and was told that every main argument that was put to the Council, and rejected by the Council, was entirely valid, we are yet to hear a single member of the Administration admit they got it wrong or ask questions about why the Council CMT made such a balls up on the entire process. Hell we even have some of the Administration trying to take credit for saving specific schools.
This administration is a made up of a number of self serving stronger personalities with the balance made up of spineless sheep. They have no moral compass and need to be purged.
Recent comments by Integrity? Not in the CondemAll
- So who’s in the SNP Council Group today – and should they be?
I am not a fan of the multi member ward system. However whilst I would welcome it being abandoned I tend to think that is simply papering over the cracks. Local Government in Scotland needs a far more dramatic overhaul than that.
32 local authorities is a ridiculous number to have for a country with a population only just exceeding 5 million. There are over 1,200 councillors in Scotland with the geographical area for local authorities ranging from about 25 square miles to about 12,500 square miles! Similarly the population ranges from about 20,000 to well over half a million.
Cutting the number of councillors is going to make an insignificant impact to costs in the grand scheme of things. For example the total cost of councillors to A&B in 2013/14 made up about 0.7% of total employee costs. So yes there are some savings that could be made but they are not going to deliver radical savings or a material reinvestment in service delivery.
I would kick start a major overhaul of local government by reducing the number of councils in Scotland from 32 to maybe between 15 or 20. Once we have a more manageable number of local authorities then proper consideration can be given to devolving power to them, and reintroducing more fiscal control at a local level (which should begin with abandoning the council tax freeze and reversing the centralisation of policy making that is associated with the freeze). Councils should be given the appropriate levers to determine what is strategically best for their area, reflecting local needs, in terms of increasing or decreasing taxation (and not just council tax).
Having less councils wouldn’t totally rid us of the issue of some councils having relatively small populations compared to others (due to the geography of Scotland) but it would mean there is less power hoarded by the two big city councils. Hopefully this would result in more meaningful efforts at partnership working and shared services without the ‘little guys’ being muscled out by overpowering large councils.
It always seemed strange to me that Scotland was moving toward being an independent country at the same time as there being ongoing centralisation of power within Scotland itself. It is a contradiction in democratic will.
- When is Argyll and Bute going to publish its mini-count breakdown of the indy referendum vote here?
I can understand why some people would be interested in seeing a breakdown however I personally fail to see any great value in it. We don’t need to encourage further division, quite the opposite. It was a national vote where every vote carried equal weight, I think it’s better leaving it as a national result.
- Lifeline for wildlife – 5p per carrier bag in Scotland from today
I have no problem with this law. If anything I don’t think it is steep enough. I was amazed at the 80% statistic and find myself questioning it’s credibility as I wouldn’t expect 5p to be much of a deterrent. I would have preferred total removal of plastic bags and the adoption of something more in.line with French supermarkets.
- For Argyll challenge to candidates for Thursday’s Oban North & Lorn by-election
That’s right, never mind promoting the credentials of the candidate – as long as they have the same gender!
I don’t know Stephanie Irvine and am not for a second suggesting she is or isn’t a credible candidate. However I would wager if she is credible she would prefer for people to vote for her on the basis of what she can bring to the post rather than simply because of ‘women supporting women’
- General election television debates
Great more debates, just what we need, more mindless chest thumping my quips better than your quip, or fans of both camps claiming irrelevant victories.
I couldn’t care less about arguments over who should and shouldn’t be involved. I’d rather they were scrapped so money wasn’t wasted on a gruesome spectacle which serves no positive value and only paints UK politics in an ugly light.
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