Harlow Tories slam cost of new bigger Labour cabinet

News / Tue 29th May 2018 at 11:55am

Andrew J

THE leader of the Harlow Conservatives has slammed the cost of the expanded new Labour cabinet unveiled at Harlow Council last week.

In one of new leader, Cllr Mark Ingall’s acts, he has increased the number of cabinet posts in his group.

He has created a number of new ones such as Equality and Diversity as well as reshape others.

We caught up with the shadow leader, Cllr Andrew Johnson to see what he thought.

Cllr Andrew Johnson, Leader of Harlow Conservatives said:

“Using taxpayers’ money to fund additional allowances for councillors sends out the wrong signal. The Momentum backed hard left councillors that have taken over Harlow Labour Party talk about the redistribution of wealth, but their first act seems to be to redistribute more of resident’s money to themselves! This is a serious lack of judgement by the new Leader.”

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29 Comments for Harlow Tories slam cost of new bigger Labour cabinet:

m ingall
2018-05-29 14:09:39

In all his fury the Leader of Harlow Tories has not mentioned the sums involved. The two new Portfolios that were created are Economic Development and Equalities and Diversity, which have added a total of £0.14 pence per household.......per year. That's right, 14p per household per year. Economic development is the "engine" for future prosperity for all our residents, encouraging new businesses to expand and creating an environment that brings new industries and opportunities to Harlow, it is therefore appropriate that this has a dedicated Councillor to oversee it and drive it forward. The new Equalities and Diversity Portfolio will ensure we get a renewed focus on fairness to all, addressing the gender pay gap - making sure women are being paid what they are worth, ensuring that the disabled have fair access to work, training and services, supporting religious and ethnic minorities so that they are not exploited or discriminated against and addressing age discrimination so that Harlow's residents can grow old with dignity. I'm not sure whether its the Economic Development or a Harlow with fair opportunities for all that offends the Tories, but in my opinion both things matter and it is 14p very well spent.

Brett Hawksbee
2018-05-29 14:40:34

Predictably contemptible faux outrage, from a Tory opposition which is seriously challenged to find genuine reasons to be critical of the Labour run council which is delivering ever more for the people of Harlow. If I were leader of Harlow Council I could imagine spending more than £0.14 per household just publicising the £1.2million plus this year which will be returned to the council's budget, and not dispersed around the globe to Kier shareholders. That alone is worth 231 times the increased spend objected to, at £32.43 per household. So the 'rebate' from HTS is effectively reduced to £32.29 ... and we have dedicated portfolio holders for economic development (in absolutely everyone's interest) and Equalities and Diversity (worthy and important contemporary issues routinely trampled on by a Tory central government). It is a sad state of affairs when the Tories rely on the fact that many people don't read past the headline, or actually verify Tory claims, over presenting any genuine credible point of objection. Objecting to a spend of less than half of one percent, of a revenue increase achieved by sound financial planning. And objected to BY an administration that saw a capital flight from the same budget totalling millions over the lifetime of the Kier contract. It is laughable.

2018-05-29 16:50:14

Goodness me, I'm beginning to wonder if the Tories are so angry about everything whether moments of levity give them migraines. A Cabinet such as this will be more responsive to people's needs and have a more targeted approach to issues within our community, helping our town to reach its potential as a caring, diverse and welcoming place for all. Still, could be worse. At least Labour are spending public money on helping the public and not heating their stables like Nadim Zahawi.

2018-05-29 18:54:52

This is what marks a true difference between Labour and the Conservatives in Harlow - they think it’s ok to keep spending tax payers cash. I don’t care if it’s £1 more or £6500 more - the point is it’s not necessary and is a bad use of tax payers money. Cllr Andrew Johnson Leader of Harlow Conservatives

2018-05-29 20:02:48

It's a good job that you don't care if it's £1, Andrew. Because as the leader of the council says, it's 14p. While we're on the subject of taxpayers' cash, has our MP paid back the £25k he spent of taxpayers cash on having an affair?

2018-05-29 20:03:23

Or was that a good use of taxpayers money?

2018-05-29 21:29:31

I mean obviously Andrew, Mr Halfon didn't spend all £25k on having an affair. I fully accept that most of the cash for his stay at the East India Club was for accommodation as illustrated in reportage in the Guardian and Mirror at the time. Curiously though, when you try to follow a link to the receipts page of his website for this time, the page is not found. So my question is, is spending a portion of taxpayers cash on having an affair worse than spending 14p on a better more targeted way of dealing with the concerns of local people?

2018-05-29 21:45:19

Talk about predictable, I have seen some pre-prepared PR spin in my life time but this takes the biscuit. These ultra-defensive posts appeared so quickly it suggests that Labour knew very well how this would be viewed, but decided to do it anyway, prepared their best responses to counter the expected criticism and the views of Harlow residents. Massaging the figures in this way is exactly what I would have done in your shoes: yes, 14 pence per household sounds very reasonable. But the fact is to many people in Harlow, £6,500 is a huge sum. And what about all the extra officer time, meetings, etc? It is actually a significantly greater sum, and what will it achieve? Although economic development and fair opportunities are certainly issues to be addressed, I am not convinced this is the right way to go about it. Of course, I may be wrong but we will see.

2018-05-29 22:02:37

I'm sure you have seen a lot of spin Mike. Like the Conservative Party spinning Universal Credit as some kind of saviour while people wait weeks and months for benefits to be paid and some committing suicide in that agonising period. Like the Conservative Party spinning themselves as a safe pair of hands while borrowing more in five years than Labour did in 13. Like the Conservative Party spinning themselves as "Strong and Stable" yet ending up falling flat on their faces at the 2017 election and having to be propped up by the backward DUP. I bet they spin you dizzy.

2018-05-30 06:09:51

Whichever way the troll prattles on,it's same old reds, spending our money on more crack-pot ideas. Equalities and Diversity. lol

Brett Hawksbee
2018-05-30 07:45:32

Aaah MickyB77. So late to this party I was beginning to think you'd turned all socialist and decided to not criticise! But in you come with the 'spending our money' card ... How furious would you have been if the HTS rebate (projected £1.2m this year) was still being spent by Keir shareholders rather than returning to the town's economy? Micky would your mum, or nan, or sister think it was a waste spending 14p per year to have a councillor tasked with ensuring that as women, or as older citizens, their rights were being respected? Labour injected 231 times this amount INTO the budget, and spend less than half of one percent on the joint tasks of dedicated attention to economic development and equality and diversity. And when the economic development portfolio bears fruit, and attracts additional business into the town, and 0.05% of the council income thus generated is spent on a new initiative, that will doubtless have to be 'wasteful' too. This is, Micky, Mike and Andrew, truly clutching at straws.

Brett Hawksbee
2018-05-30 08:14:48

And Mr Hardware, Since every response from Labour supporters here are 'shooting fish in a barrel' blindingly obvious responses to engineered Tory outrage, absolutely no pre-planning was necessary or undertaken. Just as there was no pre planning in Andrew's speech ... where 'Momentum' went from apparently being 35+ 'mob handed', so to speak, on the streets in Mike Danvers and Jake Shepherds campaigns, to in the next sentence being mostly 'keyboard warriors'... quite amusing watching his brain catch up with his words at that point! Point of information: The majority of time local Momentum members spend online, is either campaigning, or organising ... Momentum members in Harlow routinely and with dedication and commitment, involve themselves with initiative such as the fund raising events for Streets to Homes, or PAH Dementia Garden, or Harlow Soup, or the Children's or Dementia Friendly Film shows, or collecting for Harlow Foodbank. All entirely voluntary work which if the Tory Government had a shred of humanity would not be needed. But work that is actually vital.

2018-05-30 11:16:55

Ah yes Micky, those "crackpot reds" and their crazy ideas. Like the formation of the NHS which, as a man of principle that you like to think of yourself as, you've never used and never will use, right?

2018-05-30 12:02:49

Aah Hawksbee. The state supplies it all, as every good marxist ideologist believes in, like Castro, and the Russian state, and Venezuela etc. Only connection between the lot is P O V E R T Y. Don't forget the super rich REDS who are buying up England, the majority are Ex commies or? Oh, football clubs too. So big H where do you contribute too ? Another assassination of a Putin critic, I wonder. The troll always gets the last word.

2018-05-30 15:08:04

Looking at the replies on this and other topics one has to question who is actually pulling the strings at Harlow Council? Mr Hawksbee seems to have an intimate knowledge of how Momentum work within Harlow Labour and what is council policy. One for the investigative types to pick up on.

2018-05-30 17:08:25

It's Momentum Maverick! He just can't stop saying Momentum! The people of Harlow pull the strings at Harlow Council because they have, in a democracy, the power to vote in who they like and out who they don't. And Momentum Micky! He just can't stop saying Momentum either! And by the state of his confused comment, he's had a little too much meat today. Time for a lie down, darling.

2018-05-30 17:12:13

The simple fact here is, those that use Momentum as a term of abuse are scared of what it represents. Scared of hope, scared of those who in the past would be turned off politics that are now getting into how their country is run. Scared of people not satisfied with others, like some commenters on here, telling then what their place is. The old guard is over with. The future is now.

2018-05-30 18:00:10

The assassinated journalist lives. Apologies to all concerned. The moment brigade are trying desperately hard to convince, whoever, that they know more than the distinguished Councillor Johnson, and anybody else who dares to pass an opposite opinion on them. It's allowed either way. Strange, that most of these characters have suddenly popped up, to bully their way into the town hall at the expense of Cllr Clempner. And who else? Look at the amount of spurious comment made by the new faces, did they come from central office or, just, were around? It stinks, will it be welcome to Harlowski, I hope not. I'm sure that at the next election people, will have seen through the lies and dis-information being blurted out by them, and vote otherwise.

2018-05-30 18:33:29

You have something in common with our international embarrassment of a Foreign Secretary in jumping to conclusions about the assassination. I've lived in Harlow for 95% of my life so I haven't come from central office. And your fearful comment about all these new faces perfectly illustrates my point about the old guard being on the way out. You've had it all your own way for too long. Welcome to the revolution.

2018-05-31 07:00:13

I've been trolled again. It must have the last word. Idiotic comment, " I live in Harlow ,not C O", too much sherry dear !

2018-05-31 09:32:38

As stated before, I'm a non drinker. I like the way he describes me as an "it", and we all know the first step to fascism is to dehumanise people. Sounds like Micky should lay off the Capstan Full Strengths.

2018-05-31 09:39:06

Oh yeah, We don't believe most of your spiteful and arrogant comments, so, why believe this sarky remark. B T W, I don't .

Brett Hawksbee
2018-05-31 11:04:46

Is this the 14p argument, or the full £32.43? MickyB77 FYI. I moved to Harlow in 1960, as a 5 year old. I will need to repeat your other comments before responding to them. "Aah Hawksbee. The state supplies it all, as every good marxist ideologist believes in, like Castro, and the Russian state, and Venezuela etc." 1) We are discussing income created by the Labour Council which previously left the local economy each year, to the Keir shareholder diaspora, not state funded income. That said, all states operate to some degree by allocating central resources to local regions. It is how a state works. It is how all the responsibilities of state government are administered and distributed. (The Russian State, incidentally, is not run based on Marxist Ideology or Marxian economic principles. Nor,increasingly, is Cuba, although retaining fundamentally socialist principles in education, healthcare etc. And you mention Venezuela. Had you a wider knowledge of global politics, there are many other states which you might have mentioned; unfortunately all of whom, like Venezuela, are not any test of socialism for as long as US foreign policy is enacted to destabilise them, or in any form (including sanction) intervene. "Only connection between the lot is P O V E R T Y." Strong socialistic principles inform the administration of China Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Canada, Sweden, Norway, Ireland, New Zealand and Belgium amongst others,so why example one country which is broadly capitalist, (Russia) and two brought to their knees by US foreign policy? None of my examples meet your test of being in poverty. "Don’t forget the super rich REDS who are buying up England, the majority are Ex commies or? Oh, football clubs too" Only semi literate, but I assume you are talking about Russian Oligarchs? They my friend, are about the worst examples of a corrupt crony capitalism as you could hope to find. Funny you mention football, because this whole point is one big own goal.. "So big H where do you contribute too ? Another assassination of a Putin critic, I wonder. The troll always gets the last word". You seem to be labouring under the illusion that socialists in the UK would for some reason be supportive of the Putin regime. Putin's Russia is closer to the Tsarist state overthrown in 1917, than anything imagined by Marx or aspired to by Lenin. Sometimes Micky, it really is better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt.

2018-06-01 06:04:03

I think that the sole object of these fanatics, is to try and drive anybody who wishes to pass comment, opposite theirs, will be insulted and derided by these two reds. Propagandists and obviously commies to the core.

Brett Hawksbee
2018-06-01 07:41:03

I think you'll find, MickyB77, (and anyone else troubled to actually read the replies), that your 'go to' response is baseless assertion or ad hominem, whereas myself and JFQ tend to favour facts which expose your arguments. It can be a bugger, I realise; facts do tend to get in the way of many right wing arguments.

2018-06-01 14:40:24

These reds,you now who, are determined to drive out anybody who comments on these articles. They come across as absolute dyed in the wool propagandists for momentum and the marxists. They insult all and sundry in the hope that opposition comment is nullified. A form of censorship if ever there was. Neither of them were rarely heard of before local elections, but, all of a sudden we have the sledge-hammer, nut, syndrome. Champagne Socialists. Read some of their insulting comments and make your own mind up what they're up to. Central office bullies, no more,no less, dedicated to, our way is best.

Brett Hawksbee
2018-06-02 11:14:32

Micky you have simply proven my point. More of the same assertions is not a fitting response. Your comments have been rebutted. In a debate, you have to now reassert them with evidence that the rebuttals are not valid, or concede the points. Far from wishing to drive anyone out Micky, we are ready, willing and happy to continue to engage on points of fact or opinion, but you must be able to support your opinion with some kind of evidence, or be seen as a simple blowhard. Let's rationally analyse another of your recent posts. I will bracket my responses, to separate them from your words. "The assassinated journalist lives. Apologies to all concerned". [Given the claims about Momentum/Marxist manipulation, the earlier suggestion that we would in some way support Russian State sponsored murder, (which has already been rebutted) this is a particularly unfortunate reference to a right wing government machiavellian plot to intentionally deceive the whole world's media. Next time they claim someone has been killed by the Russian State, why should we believe them?] "The moment brigade are trying desperately hard to convince, whoever, that they know more than the distinguished Councillor Johnson, and anybody else who dares to pass an opposite opinion on them. It’s allowed either way" [I have suggested that fake outrage about a 14p per household spend, from a budget which saw NO INCREASE to the Council element of the Council Tax, is disingenuous. Particularly since the Council owned HTS will return sums equal to more than 12%, or £35+ per household (230 times more than the spend being objected to. For your part, you babbled about 'spending taxpayers money' in relation to a spend of less than 0.5% of revenue increases achieved by the council. Let me put it another way; you are moaning about a 14p per household spend, but offering no credit for a £35+ per household revenue increase established by the same council. Selective criticism?] "Strange, that most of these characters have suddenly popped up, to bully their way into the town hall at the expense of Cllr Clempner. And who else?" [Neither JFQ, nor I spontaneously popped into existence. (Although I have recently chosen to post under my real name) Neither of us have had any involvement in John Clempner's decisions. You are talking about someone who voluntarily resigned post and party. } "Look at the amount of spurious comment made by the new faces, did they come from central office or, just, were around?" [We have both already stated how long we have been involved in the town] "It stinks, will it be welcome to Harlowski, I hope not". [Yet more assinine and groundless claims] "I’m sure that at the next election people, will have seen through the lies and dis-information being blurted out by them, and vote otherwise". [Again. you don't get to accuse people of lying, without defeating their claims, or showing them to be false; you are welcome to trawl back, find any claims and produce your evidence countering them. I won't hold my breath. As I said previously, the actual facts ... the truth, decimates your repeated false accusations. All you appear to have, Micky, is 'repeating them some more'. It doesn't cut it.]

2018-06-03 07:55:17

Typical. Dictating what, and how, people are allowed reply to your marxist views. Touches of the STATE knows best. AMEN.

Brett Hawksbee
2018-06-03 09:14:45

I'm dictating nothing Micky, I am simply pointing out the deficiencies and inadequacies of your arguments. At no point have I challenged your right or freedom to be deficient or inadequate.

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