Leader Responds To Inaccuracies In Councillor's Letter.

PUBLISHED: 17:39 15 February 2010 | UPDATED: 11:13 04 May 2010

I AM responding to the inaccuracies in the letter from Cllr Pauline Wilson regarding the Community Services Committee meeting on January 21. Firstly, all the savings proposals detailed at the meeting were achievable and had been worked through. Any member

I AM responding to the inaccuracies in the letter from Cllr Pauline Wilson regarding the Community Services Committee meeting on January 21. Firstly, all the savings proposals detailed at the meeting were achievable and had been worked through. Any member of the Liberal Democrat Group could have consulted with officers prior to the meeting who would have explained the saving proposal - figures are not just plucked from the air. Cllr Wilson and her colleagues have, once again, chosen to ignore the information available to them and remove themselves from the need to make difficult financial decisions.

We are all aware of the financial challenges facing this council and therefore, I am very please that prior to the committee, I was able to find the funds to maintain the 'In Bloom' initiatives in Ely. Furthermore, I was delighted that in the spirit of partnership, ADeC came forward with a financial package, which will offer a sustainable arts service for the next two years. Yes, we did change the savings proposal and I think we ere absolutely correct to do so, in the context that we could still deliver a balanced budget next year.

Cllr Wilson is aware that the Community Services Committee can only make policy decisions. Further savings can be made to the market service following the agreement of the proposal for market traders to supply their own stalls. This decision will unfortunately affect staff employed by the council and we are trying to manage this process as sensitively as possible. Cllr Wilson was aware that staff-related savings could not be discussed in the committee because of our human resources policies, and yet she continues to make these accusations of not being provided with the information.

Finally, Cllr Wilson refers to the committee as being a "muddle"- isn't it ironic that given her own amendment; the budgetary decision had to be redrafted because it made no sense.

CLLR FRED BROWN

Leader of East Cambs District Council.

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