Opposition? What Opposition!

Little wonder that Rotherham Council is so poor – there’s a distinct lack of scrutiny or oversight provided by the so-called Tory opposition!

There are 7 Tory Councillors on Rotherham Borough Council but what do they spend their time doing? They must all be asleep during Council meetings or absent as few of them has ever been reported as raising any issues with the ruling Labour Group over recent years.

What’s the purpose of having an opposition when they don’t ‘oppose’? Or could the answer be that they are content to take their Councillor allowances, do very little and join in with the ‘troughing’ and ‘social life’ that Councillors appear to enjoy and value above all else?

In my opinion, they act more like an Independent group, showing a lack of co-ordination and direction, presumably with a Group Leader who takes a Leader’s allowance but doesn’t seem to be ‘leading’. It seems to me that Rotherham Politics provides more scrutiny, oversight and comment on the antics of the Council than the official ‘opposition’!!

If the Tories claim to be truly opposed to what the Labour Group is doing, then they should form themselves into a cohesive group, elect themselves a Leader who gives leadership and supports the Group and starts doing what they are on the Council to do!

Millie

Labour Abuses Privileges – Martin Kimber Duped?

Yet another sorry tale of Labour abusing their privileges I am sorry to relate. This time in the Eric Manns Building aka ‘the Councillors Club’! This expose′ comes courtesy of the Rotherham Tories, who have been investigating this abuse.

This tale of petty abuse casually done, followed it would appear, by another Officer led ‘cover up’. This time it goes right to the top, the lead Officer involved, none other than the Chief Executive, Martin Kimber!

Someone thought it was acceptable to install an expensive printer, owned by the Labour Party, in the Eric Manns Building and then to use it for printing Labour Party electoral propaganda! Who thought it was an acceptable use of public resources? – we should be told!

In Rotherham both the Councillors and Officers have an extraordinarily loose relationship when it comes to their observance of their ‘Codes of Conduct’.  Martin Kimber’s role here leaves him open to the accusation of naivety if not complicity! This kind of thing should never happen, it must not do so again.

I reproduce the Tory Press Release:

Press release on Labour theft of electricity

Rotherham Labour Councillors caught fiddling the ‘lecky!
Sent by: Cllr Tony Mannion

Phone No 07766441754

Conservative Gp Leader Cllr John Gilding.

Phone No 07795368650


The Conservative Opposition Councillors have caught Labour with their hands in the public purse yet again. This time with a systematically planned operation to print Party Political leaflets using stolen electricity.

They purchased a printer said to have cost £3000 and installed it in a public building, the Eric Manns building, so it’s not just the theft of electricity but the misuse of a public building as well.

The Chief Executive, Mr Martin Kimber, investigated the matter and his initial decision was to charge them a nominal sum for one day’s use of the printer, as that was all the use of the printer that Labour admitted to. We subsequently informed Mr Kimber. that the printer was first seen being used over at the very least a two month period, they have been seen using the printer on several occasions by the Conservative opposition, and that stacks of paper and ink cartridges have been seen in the Eric Manns building for Labour’s use. He stands by his initial decision!

Cllr Tony Mannion. said “we always felt that for Labour to spend £3000 on a machine, go to the trouble of installing it in a public building, with all the inherent risk involved, and then to use it on one occasion was just too ridiculous for words!” he added “ this was not a portable machine, not even a table top model, this was a large free standing machine as large as the professional photocopiers that the public can use for a fee in their local shops and Library’s. This would take at least two men to install, who installed it, who signed for it, and who subsequently removed it, all in plain view of the Council Staff?”

We know from our experience of fighting elections that when you use a smaller machine than the ones used by professional Printers that to get the numbers needed to cover an electoral ward they soon turnout to be more expensive than getting the job done by a professional printer, even with the electricity being paid for by the taxpayer: so the question has to be asked if they were prepared to steal electricity how can we be sure they did not use any council paper or ink cartridges?

Leader of the opposition Cllr John Gilding stated “The installation of this machine was no small affair and from my many years of experience in Politics I know the purchase of such an expensive item has to be approved at the highest levels. Where did the people who approved this purchase think it was going?”

Labour have closed ranks and refused to confirm when the machine was installed, who installed it and who subsequently removed it.

Cllr Cutts said “Its not just the theft of the electricity and who knows possibly paper and ink, it’s the use of a public building as their office. The Labour party, to best of my knowledge do not have an office in Rotherham so to bypass the cost of an office with all its overheads is no mean saving, and we ought to know as we do have an office fully paid for by our members, and we pay our own electricity bills as well!”

An added twist to the tale is that the printer was in the Chair of Planning’s office when it was first spotted but was then placed in the Majority room without actually being moved, they simply changed the name on the door.

Cllr Cutts added “whether or not this was to protect the Chairman of planning or to disguise what they doing we do not know. I do know, even if we hadn’t seen them doing their printing on several occasions, that to ask us to accept that they used it only once is quite unbelievable! We are not satisfied that we have got to the bottom of this scandal yet and we will keep pressing and digging until we do!”

Quite a little tale, this raises as many questions as it answers. More on this as information comes in. If you have any further insights in to this story, please let us know.

Mirror, Mirror On The Wall, Who Is The Greediest Of Them All?…..

Let the figures speak for themselves!

Greed by Individual Councillor 2009-10
Rank Name 2009-10 Ward Up Next Year
1 Roger Stone £45,407.72 Silverwood Yes
2 Terry Sharman £34,062.38 Wingfield Yes
3 Richard Russell £29,127.27 Hoober No
4 Gerald Smith £28,730.15 Holderness No
5 Mahroof Hussain £28,670.90 Boston Castle No
6 Glyn Whelbourn £28,662.08 Rawmarsh No
7 Shaun Wright £28,624.15 Rawmarsh No
8 Jahangir Akhtar £28,622.08 Rotherham West No
9 Ken Wyatt £28,597.44 Swinton No
10 Iain StJohn £26,707.84 Anston & Woodsetts Yes
11 John Doyle £26,608.20 Swinton Yes
12 Dave Pickering £23,292.72 Valley No
13 Ann Russell £23,268.91 Silverwood No
14 Rose McNeely £23,186.91 Boston Castle No
15 Jane Austen £23,183.41 Holderness Yes
Georgina Boyes £23,183.41 Rother Vale No
17 Alex Sangster £23,182.96 Wath Yes
John Gilding £23,182.96 Sitwell Yes
19 Hilda Jack £23,180.04 Holderness No
Peter Wooton £23,180.04 Boston Castle Yes
21 Barry Dodson £17,821.29 Rotherham East Yes
22 John Swift £17,746.45 Rother Vale Yes
23 Lindsay Johnston £17,734.79 Wingfield No
Paul Lakin £17,734.79 Valley Yes
Jennifer Whysall £17,734.79 Wales No
26 Alan Atkin £17,064.05 Wath No
JRA Turner £17,064.05 Hellaby No
28 Maurice Kirk £14,366.66 Rotherham East No
Amy Rushforth £14,366.66 Maltby No
30 Frank Hodgkiss £14,191.06 Hoober No
31 Josephine Burton £13,974.74 Anston & Woodsetts No
32 Reg Littleboy £13,882.84 Brinsworth & Catcliffe Yes
33 Shaukat Ali £13,735.60 Rotherham East No
34 Pat Russell £13,640.64 Silverwood No
35 Ian Barron £13,596.78 Keppel No
36 Sheila Walker £13,588.84 Keppel No
37 Barry Kaye £13,570.24 Keppel Yes
38 Jacqueline Falvey £13,558.84 Dinnington No
Alan Gosling £13,558.84 Wath No
Jane Hamilton £13,558.84 Hoober Yes
Jane Havenhand £13,558.84 Dinnington Yes
42 Fred Wright £13,558.40 Brinsworth & Catcliffe No
43 Simon Currie £13,404.13 Valley No
Keith Goulty £13,404.13 Wingfield No
45 Simon Tweed £13,400.75 Dinnington No
46 Chris McMahon £12,952.16 Wickersley No
47 Neil License £12,772.58 Swinton No
48 Kath Sims £12,457.87 Rotherham West No
49 T Fenoughty £12,412.54 Wales No
50 Michael Clarke £12,306.98 Sitwell Dec
Brian Cutts £12,306.98 Hellaby Yes
Lynda Donaldson £12,306.98 Hellaby No
John Foden £12,306.98 Rotherham West Yes
Neil Hamilton £12,306.98 Rawmarsh Yes
Tony Mannion £12,306.98 Sitwell No
G Nightingale £12,306.98 Rother Vale No
G Sharp £12,306.98 Wales Yes
Ben Slade £12,306.98 Maltby Yes
Peter Thirlwall £12,306.98 Wickersley Yes
60 Will Blair £12,303.59 Maltby No
John Gamble £12,303.59 Brinsworth & Catcliffe No
Darren Hughes £12,303.59 Anston & Woodsetts No
Martyn Parker £12,303.59 Boston Castle No

Councillor Greed by Ward 2009-2010.
Ward totals in descending order.
Ward Total Rank
Silverwood £82,317.27 1
Holderness £75,093.60 2
Boston Castle £75,037.85 3
Rawmarsh £69,593.21 4
Swinton £67,978.22 5
Wingfield £65,201.13 6
Hoober £56,877.17 7
Valley £54,431.64 8
Wath £53,804.30 9
Rotherham West £53,386.93 10
Rother Vale £53,236.84 11
Anston & Woodsetts £52,986.17 12
Sitwell £47,796.88 13
Rotherham East £45,923.55 14
Wales £42,454.31 15
Hellaby £41,681.01 16
Keppel £40,755.86 17
Dinnington £40,518.43 18
Brinsworth & Catcliffe £39,744.83 19
Maltby £38,977.23 20
Wickersley £37,562.73 21

Extracted from: http://www.rotherham.gov.uk/download/3675/members_allowances_and_expenses_2009-10

Next Years Crop?

Political parties throughout the country are beginning the process of choosing their candidates for next years round of local council elections.

This list below details the Rotherham councillors that successfully fought these seats the last time they were contested in 2007.

If this list ends up looking anything like next years field of candidates then both Labour and the Tories are definitely having a laugh at our expense! It must surely be time for some of of them to go if their respective political parties want us to take them at all seriously in the future.

Hens ‘earn their corn’ by laying eggs, when they stop laying, it is surely time for them to go!

So too it should be on the council, when they have out lived their usefulness, it is time for them to stand aside, not to continue on until carried out in a box!

Even the Labour Party insists that being a councillor is not a job for life, but it is a pity that the Labour Party’s writ does not run as far as Rotherham, never has!

Which is why we are landed with such poor candidates year after year because no one wants to give up their allowances that give them a good life. We must not forget the ‘State Funeral’ that is their due entitlement if they die in office. We must also not forget, that when there are ‘bodies buried’, it pays to be around lest anything gets out.

When a labour councillor dies, the relatives of the recently deceased are treated to an immediate search and removal of anything that appertains to the work on the council of their loved one, quite outrageous when you have seen it up close from the relatives perspective!

Anston and Woodsetts Ward
Iain St John – Labour -1394 (321)

Boston Castle Ward
Peter Wootton – Labour – 1282 (451)

Brinsworth and Catcliffe Ward
Reg Littleboy – Labour – 1515 (366)

Dinnington Ward
Jane Havenhand – Labour – 1216 (427)

Hellaby Ward
Brian Cutts – Conservative – 1516 (697)

Holderness Ward
Jane Austen – Labour – 1801 (713)

Hoober Ward
Jane Hamilton – Labour – 1531 (612)

Keppel Ward
Barry Kaye – Labour – 1190 (238)

Maltby Ward
Ben Slade – Independent – 913 (90)

Rawmarsh Ward
Neil Hamilton – Labour – 1495 (673)

Rother Vale Ward
John Swift – Labour – 1461 (917)

Rotherham East Ward
Barry Dodson – Labour – 1312  (826)

Rotherham West Ward
John Foden – Labour – 1305 (369)

Silverwood Ward
Roger Stone – Labour – 1088 (217)

Sitwell Ward
John Gilding – Conservative – 1901 (967)

Swinton Ward
John Doyle – Labour – 1436 (729)

Valley Ward
Paul Lakin – Labour – 1271 (668)

Wales Ward
Gavin Sharp – Conservative – 1045 (322)

Wath Ward
Alex Sangster – Labour – 1641 (717)

Wickersley Ward
Peter Thirlwall – Labour (Sits as Independent) – 1329 (233)

Wingfield Ward
Terry Sharman – Labour – 1411 (545)

For a quick look at photos of the Rotherham councillors all on the same page, not recommended for the nervous or easily shocked, you have been warned click here to view.

At first glance, there are an awful lot of very old pictures here, time surely for an update?