Tory council leader: Let’s make this a commercially savvy council
News / Mon 6th Dec 2021 at 11:26am
HARLOW Council leader Russell Perrin set out his stall last week regarding the business-like approach to running the organisation.
He told members of the ruling cabinet that he wanted a more “commercially-savvy” council as part of there corporate strategy.
He also reaffirmed his commitment to being a low tax council.
Portfolio holder for regeneration, Cllr Dan Swords endorsed this view, saying that “we need to get out go out of the habit of running to the hard working Harlow taxpayer.”
Film of the news item and a copy of the agenda is below.
When will Councillors get the difference between a business and an efficient public body elected public servants to represent and improve the lives of residents. Businesses worry about making a profit out of the customer whilst cutting costs. It seems that in promising to cut taxes the Council confuses taxes with buying a simple commodity. Unpopular with some, taxes properly targeted are beneficial: we see how the Tory desire to cut taxes, cut everything in the the name of small government and austerity policies exposed the population to the ravages of COVID, poor and overstretched services, a social housing shortage and increased drug problems whilst the rich got richer and the poor poorer with thousands upon thousands of people needing to use food banks. Tax the companies that evade tax rather than cut back services and tax the property developers who it's reported, have made Harlow the most lucrative places in the uk for property developers to make the greatest profits. Business isn't public service and business like shouldn't be confused with provision of the efficiency and competence needed to run a Council and represent the people.
Totally agree with Novoman.
Let's hope their "savvy" won't be a repeat of the numerous local councils who lost their shirt with the collapse of Bank of Credit and Commerce International in 1991, nor the £1billion of local authorities investments flushed away in Icelandic banks in 2008. Perhaps the last consultants Harlow Council employed to draw up a Non-Housing Asset Management Plan (AMP) should be reassessed to see if they paid for a load of baloney. The Draft Client Brief for a new AMP overseeing £121million of assets published in 2017 stated: 'The Council’s (AMP) has not been substantially revised for several years, with the latest approved AMP covering the period 2009/10 – 2013/14. Harlow Council is looking to appoint a suitably qualified consultant to prepare a new AMP, which is intended to be used as a corporate framework to govern how Harlow Council manages, uses and develops its non-housing land and property assets.' The phrase 'has not been substantially revised for several years' sounds like a lack of management to me. I wonder how successful the AMP has been since then?
I think people need to be mindful that politics and councils are two completely separate topics. No matter what political power comes in, they have to convince the stagnant council workers to change including their mentality. I personally would get everybody employed by the council to reapply for their jobs and prove they're good enough for the position, justify that the position is needed and it adds benefit to the town starting from the senior associates and management working down. "working together for Harlow". Wishful thinking this is how a business would operate to independantly look at efficency, value resource and time management looking at restructuring and organisational processes. This would never ever occur though due to the corruption in all councils where the number one priority is to provide justification for everything rather than doing what is right for other human beings and providing a true democracy.