Today at Sefton’s Cabinet meeting we had another package of savings before us on this all-party committee. The savings had been crawled over in detail by each political party and we came to the meeting with 3 lists of savings. Two of the three lists had all-party agreement with the third being one where each item had the agreement of only two of the three parties. Things started to go off at a tangent straight away when Labour called for all the savings before us to be postponed until December. Clearly independent council officers advising the Cabinet were surprised at this turn of events and advised against postponing. Their reasoning was sound (the officers that is) as they made it very clear that they needed time to consult with staff and their unions and delaying things would just make things more difficult. Indeed, if we don’t make savings soon we will have to make even bigger savings putting even more jobs at risk. I was perplexed by the Labour move and I assume the trade union reps sitting with us during the meeting were as well. The proposal to postpone could only mean more grief for their members and our staff!
Things went down hill from there with Labour clearly intent on filibustering for reasons best known to them. We got there in the end but frankly it was a farce.
I have said before that the mess our economy is in is down to the bankers and Labour spending and borrowing too much whilst in office. I suppose therefore that Labour’s aim is to distance themselves from the consequences of their party’s own actions whilst in government. A form of denial?
For my part we simply have to make the savings to balance the books; if we don’t more jobs will be at risk and Council services will grind to a halt. I realise that agreeing to making the savings may well be seen by Labour as them admiting their own guilt but they have to get real.