Cabinet meeting – 14th April 2011 – Election Special Edition – Part 7 – Budget, Governance Statement, savings & PwC, Local Government Resource Review

Cllr Holbrook said he welcome the announcement regarding the Enterprise Zone and referred to Wirral Waters. The amendment was agreed.

Item 4 – the Annual Governance Statement was agreed.

Item 5 was the Contracts Review. Ian Coleman said that Wirral Council were to engage PricewaterhouseCoopers to look at the fifty largest contracts. The credits would expire in June and it would lead to savings to the authority.

Cllr Green said he shuddered regarding engaging consultants. However in this case it was credits versus cash. Ian Coleman said that if the contract was extended he would have to come back to the Cabinet. Cllr Green said to tidy up, as set out in paragraphs 3.1 to 3.4 he wanted to make sure skills would be transferred. Item 5 was agreed.

The local government resource review was also introduced by Ian Coleman. He explained the outcome of negotiations with the government in this area and the Department of Communities and Local Government. Cllr Green said that Wirral Council needed to nail its position to the mast regarding what was in Wirral’s best interests. He said we need to be absolutely crystal clear where we stand.

Cllr Holbrook said the revised recommendation gets us on the front foot as well as widening the network of groups influenced. Cllr Green agreed.

The recommendation is below:-

“2.1 That Officers and Members, as appropriate, undertake detailed work and proactively make representations to influence Government, with the aim of securing a fair and rebalanced funding formula to tackle Wirral’s underlying problems and provide adequate resources for local services.

2.2 That input be made to collective lobbying through bodies such as SIGOMA, LGA, Liverpool City Region, other Councils and representative bodies, as appropriate, to promote the case for equalisation, seeking to ensure that those local authorities with a low income from business rates and a high level of Government Grant support are not adversely affected by the proposed repatriation of business rates.”

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Author: John Brace

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