Council Meeting Wednesday, 4th March, 2015 2.00 p.m.

This one should be interesting:

Council Meeting Wednesday, 4th March, 2015 2.00 p.m.

Click this link below, to watch live or at your leisure:

http://www.rotherham.public-i.tv/core/portal/webcast_interactive/169007

37 thoughts on “Council Meeting Wednesday, 4th March, 2015 2.00 p.m.

  1. Been watching the podcast, what a civilise event, amazing with the commissioners there how we’re getting a proper discussions by the whole council. Spotted Cllr S Ali there, sitting with the Labour group. Isn’t he still suspended and shouldn’t he be sitting as an independent ?

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  2. You get the impression that alls well now according to Hoddinott and Read.

    Sad that the indication was that the council’s problem was all the government’s fault because of the cuts. Through the late 1990’s and onwards when I worked for RMBC, I suffered cut after cut to my budgets, 10%, 5%, 8%, etc year in year out and my budget was slashed from £550,00 down to £300,000 over 10 years and that was under a Labour Government! I don’t recall that being raised at full council during that time but yet now, its easy for this council to blame the Government.

    An opposition councillor (Reynolds) asked if the road junction at Pool Green had cost the council taxpayer any money. The Mayor replied it was all European money its not cost the local taxpayer any money. The level of Incompetence is staggering in that the Mayor and members didn’t know (including Beck who was responsible for pushing this through council) that the Rotherham taxpayer has paid over £1m towards the cost of the new road junction. I do feel Reynolds missed a open goal by not pushing the Labour party on this point.

    I should be amazed that they didn’t know but I’m not and they still remained ignorant until Karl Battersby told them that the cost to RMBC was actually around £1million pounds. Staggering incompetence.

    More funding for a risky business type organisation. Good that the Council admits that a Risky Business type organisation is needed but it would have also been good to admit that it shouldn’t have been closed down in the first place. Admitting this would have been a good start to moving away from the culture of denial. A missed opportunity there I’m afraid.

    Some nasty sniping by Hoddinott by accusing the opposition of not calling issues in. Bit rich when the Labour party stall all call ins that don’t come from them!

    Noticeable that all or most of the labour councillors were in attendance. Clearly they close ranks and I don’t think things will ever change. Rotherham is a rotten borough and it will stay a rotten borough and the pathetic way that the Labour party run the council like a petty dictatorship.

    It may have been a bit more pleasant and the council are on their guard under the watchful eye of the Commissioners but its the same old way of doing business. We’re doomed.

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    • Good point from the councillor about these silly focus groups discussing what is needed for the victims of CSE. Thought he made a good point about it being split into different groups base on ethnicity, when the majority of victims were white English girls. It should be all lump together, after all the victims were abused in the same way, regardless of their ethnicity.

      Wondering though, if the council ethnic policy are going to be again run by the Pakistani brigade, despite the fact they make up only 3% of the 8% of that particular group. Not only are they still in denial of CSE, but because they have been so closely associated with this heinous crime, would it be appropriate for them to be seen taking a leading role in communtiy cohesion again?

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      • Its £4million and the information is contained here:

        https://moderngov.rotherham.gov.uk/documents/s98917/Capital%20Programme%20Monitoring%202015-15%20and%20Capital%20Programme%20budget%202015-16%20to%202017-18.pdf

        It says:
        “Pinch Point Pool Green roundabout (£3.832m 2014/15, £1.126min 2015/16) involves the replacement of the Main Street Roundabout with a signalised junction. The most significant elements of the scheme are the widening of the Centenary Way approaches to 3 lanes, and accommodating the right turn movements from Main Street and Centenary Way. Works are well underway. £0.201m has been reprofiled into 2015/16.”

        It said somewhere that the amount the council would have to BORROW was just over £1m which would in turn release the additional £3million fro Europe.

        I cannot find the exact reference now which is not surprising as its such a complicated and not easy to understand set of minutes and attachments.

        So that’s over £1m that RMBC had to borrow in order to release £m from European money that we now have to pay interest on which gives Rotherham council loans of around £481million to pay back.

        The B.

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    • Having watched this council meeting , I am not very impressed at all. I do not like the way the public are shouted down and not allowed to speak. I certainly won’t be going any time soon to ask a question.

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  3. I was at the meeting and if I had not known that the commissioners were there I would have wondered what the hell was going on with so many Labour councillors there. But it was interesting listening to the new leader, I’m the Reader I’m the Reader; he must have got hold of Lakin’s first speech and re hashed it. It was gut wrenching to say the least; the same old platitudes same old Labour, they put a guy in as deputy leader who denies the Casey report on TV then attempts to make out he was the victim of a channel 4 conspiracy; roll on May.
    Dave Smith

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    • … and what did you think of the UKIP opposition?
      Who was the one who said he had now resigned from UKIP?
      Who as the one who has his marriage status in his passport?
      Living in Rother Vale I have met and loath the elder of my two Labour Councillors. After today’s performance, can you imagine what I feel about my one UKIP Councillor. At least Swift didn’t speak, but dear Greg never stopped.
      __________________________________
      Btw I am the Regular Reader, please don’t take even part of my name in jest! 🙂
      RR

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      • Ukip was very poor indeed, compare to Labour. While the Labour group in general were articulate and got their points over, Ukip were disjointed and quite frankly amateurish. I know it’s early days , but they need better quality councillors.

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      • Some of the Ukip councillors were fine – possibly those who had been councilors in the past (representing other parties {?} but others were simply embarrassing, asking “challenging” questions that google could easily answer for them. I can only assume that they were playing to a target audience of a “not very bright” subgroup of constituents.

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      • I agree some of the opposition didn’t come across very well. This may well have been because they are still learning how to be an opposition and are unsure of themselves.

        It could also be that they were caught off guard as they probably didn’t expect to be given the chance to ask so many questions! In more than 20 years of being involved in Rotherham council meetings I have never seen the Labour party being so accommodating to the opposition.

        An example of this being when the leader of the opposition was very nearly too late to submit his motion for their budget proposals but the council’s legal officer told the mayor he had the discretion to allow the motion to be submitted. The Mayor thought about it for a while and then agreed to let the motion be heard.

        Now that would not have happened a few months ago, the door would have been well and truly closed. I don’t suppose it had anything to do with the fact that the Commissioners were present at the council meeting was it?

        The B.

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  4. Yea when asked about the cost of pool green roundabout …..the labour group looked really professional ….. LOL . And as Anonymous mentioned in earlier post …. just what is Shaukat Ali doing sat with labour ? This is a genuine question .. as I thought labour group sat together with everyone else sitting together ..or can councillors sit where they want ?.

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    • Did you not see two glaring omissions in the pictures in last weeks Tizer? Ali and Russell, how strange they must have forgotten. Playing ‘party games’, are we Chris Read?

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      • It ihas never been clear to me what the relationship of the “suspended” Labour Councillors have with the Labour Group on Rotherham Council; it keeps coming up on Rothpol, but has never been resolved.
        But surely Rothpol, you know far far better than I do that this strange situation long preceded Cllr Read taking over the leadership?

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        • Yes but he could have shown by stopping this blatant charade as soon as he became the new transparent leader? But wasn’t he the chap who used a loophole to conceal his domicile from his voters by means of subterfuge when first elected? I am sure that was Read?

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      • Rothpol
        tell me more about “But wasn’t he the chap who used a loophole to conceal his domicile from his voters by means of subterfuge when first elected?”. It is the first I’ve heard about it, and as I am sure you would agree – I don’t have selective hearing.

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    • Apparently rmbc had £3 million EU funding to spend by a certain date or lose it, this had to be matched with £2 million rmbc funds, according to the labour group it cost the tax payers nothing ! Not sure how they worked that out

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      • The sad thing is that the Cabinet/Council passed the approval for project last year and none of them could remember that it cost us tax payers over £1m until Karl Battersby had to remind them.

        It just shows that they vote without even knowing what they were voting for and they vote when they are told to vote. How can you not remember committing to spend £1m of the council taxpayers money?

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  5. Can anyone tell me why I can’t get the webcast of Wednesday Council meeting. I have been able to get all the recent ones until now. ?

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    • Hi Linda
      what happens is that there is the live webcast and then a longish wait until it can be seen on-demand. We are in that wait now. It should be available in about 12 hours or so and then for the foreseeable future. .

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  6. I too was at the meeting today. There were at least three Labour Cllrs there that I have not seen before, and I along with my trusty friends have been going for some time.
    At one point I thought that the Leader, was going to burst into tears whilst he was making his apologetic speech, it fooled no one. Members of the public were almost being sick whilst Cllr Ellis read out his CV as a ward Cllr, apparently he is very good at getting roads done. But what was even more odd was that Peter Thirwell was backing him to the hilt. I say odd because of the way Labour have treated him in the past.
    The new Leader made his first big mistake by selecting as his Deputy Cllr Watson. Cllr Watson you will recall was the Cllr, who was seen by all on Channel 4 news stating quite clearly that he was in denial about the Cassey report. We then had to sit through a very stomach churning speech, in which he stated that not all his interview was broadcast, and it “Wasnt fair guv” and that they only chose that bit. Sorry despite the sad “explanation”, you did say those words and you messed up. No one believed a word he said, and that includes his Labour friends.
    A question was tabled by the opposition to question if Cllr Watson was “a fit and proper person” to be Deputy Leader, Surprise, surprise, the Mayor came to his rescue and refused to even allow the question because it was “a personal attack”.
    So there you have it in a nutshell, The Labour Mayor covering up/protecting his friend from scrutiny, Same old, same old. Nothing changes.
    Finally hear is a question, If the Labour Cabinet Cllrs had to resign from their positions because the were not “fit and proper persons” and incapable of running the Council, how come they are all still in Council Meetings, making policy and speaking, Cllr Hoddinott still seems to be fully in control and seems to still be the official spokes person, in any other world they would all be gone.
    Nothing has changed.

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    • Nobody (apart from you ) has said that any of the former cabinet members weren’t fit and proper persons (the most recent cabinet). They were deemed by Casey not to have sufficient experience to bring about the required improvements but that is a world away from being not fit and proper persons.

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      • @Robin Symonds.
        Casey did not just say RMBC councillors did ‘not have sufficent experience’, she said and published in her report that RMBC was ‘not fit for purpose’. You are aware of collective responsibility Robin?
        In case you’ve forgotten; “Concluding that the South Yorkshire authority was not “fit for purpose”, Ms Casey said: “The council’s culture is unhealthy: bullying, sexism, suppression and misplaced ‘political correctness’ have cemented its failures. The council is currently incapable of tackling its weaknesses, without a sustained intervention.”
        .independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/rotherham-child-abuse-commissioners-take-over-as-council-is-judged-not-fit-for-purpose-10024456.html
        This is different from the spin you’re trying to put on the Casey report IMV.

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  7. A former councillor reliably informed me that, in his time, Labour group regularly voted through multi million pound contracts and budget items without reading them. They have failed to protect our young people, democracy, the green belt and now, our money, a pretty horrendous track record. The other question is, if the Labour Group responded en masse to the Advertisers enquiry last week, does this not imply a collective acceptance of responsibility for the findings of Casey? Should they not, therefore, have all resigned as being unfit for purpose?

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    • In the public eyes they are unfit, but in their deluded world there still doing a good job. Some people never know when to quit.

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  8. I watched the webcast of the Wednesday Council meeting from the other side of the world. For the last couple of years I have been following with interest how the Rotherham Council, Police and Social services have responded to their failure as elected members of the public in dealing with the human cost to a generation of children of that town. Seeing Council in action gives the answer as to why and how they are incapable of a proper response.
    It reminded me of the days when the headmaster sat in on a class and we all quickly turned from little devils to angels for 15 minutes or so but in reality it is business as usual in Rotherham.
    The new leader brought to mind that great music hit from ZZ Top ‘ All the girls are crazy bout a sharp dressed man’. He had the gall to say council had done some things right….Imagine applying for a job and telling your employer that he/she could expect 70% success rate.!!!!! He may be a sharped dress and possibly university trained boy but didn’t know enough to leave out that ridiculous claim to fame at such a time as this.
    May I suggest a campaign encouraging rate payers to view on a regular basis via webcast the Council meetings. If you don’t have a computer then those who do have a coffee morning and invite neighbors….. See em in action….. And vote accordingly. And if you don’t like what you see…Don’t vote…
    Jeans comment is an interesting one and speaks volumes about how ordinary people respond to the consistent bullying and humiliation by Council in dealing with important questions from the public gallery. It’s not rocket science to understand that people respond to bullying and humiliation in several ways… Avoidance, ( note empty public gallery) Apathy (it’s no use)….Shouting ( nobody can hear the argument) …. and unfortunately violence. Council should note that they are paid servants and not masters. Unless they show some regard and respect for the public they serve they may one day become a front page tragedy of the National newspapers.

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