Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Passing the Buck?

I don’t quite know what to make of this. I shall reserve judgement until the Leader of the Opposition on Redbridge Council, Bob Littlewood, comes to our next coffee morning [see next post above] and tells us about his ideas for a “Co-operative Council”.
Click on graphic to enlarge

On the one hand it could be seen as a positive move to involve the community in local authority decision making. On the other, a formalisation of what happens already. That’s what community groups like B21 do, we sit on the Sustainability Panel – and we know of others who are involved on a voluntary basis in the Health and other arenas.

However, at worst it could be seen as asking the public to do for free what we are already paying Officers and Councillors to do for us out of our taxes. And from what social grouping do they expect these volunteers to come from?

As one correspondent writes:

My more immediate concern is the ever-increasing weakening of local authority powers. Councillors are paid more and more for less and less power. They are spending time on coping with government fiats and telling us what they can’t do instead of getting on with doing their best for us here.

#BigSociety

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