DECEMBER BLOG

Flintshire’s Council met on 25th November. As the Chair’s pastor was away, Cllr Chris Bithell led prayers. Nothing wrong in how he conducted worship of course. It’s just a pity like a Whited Sepulchre, he didn’t seek forgiveness for himself for making those ghastly smears to my reputation at that stressful Planning Meeting some months ago. See Blog Passim. His disgustingly unfair remarks still await a simple apology which would then draw a line under that unpleasant incident.

Cllrs. had to debate the financial future of the North Wales Fire & Rescue Service & what will be their role over the next few years? The six county councils share the Fire & Rescue Authority from council budgets. With all Local Authorities budgets under sever strain, the choices are bleak. Welsh Government have decimated local authority budgets so where do we go to fund this essential service?

Freeze or cut the Fire & Rescue Authority budget, OR increase it & protect services? Tricky this: this brave Profession puts its life on the line to save house from burning down or cutting victims out of multiple road crashes. Can we really cut their budgets too?

Council leader, Aaron Shotton went for the safe proposal; seek yet more cuts from the Fire & Rescue service yet large savings had apparently already been made. The premise that savings are always possible might be one cut too far particularly if it’s your house that’s burning, Aaron!

A Welsh Local Government paper lay on the desk. Leading the signatories on the back page was Cllr. Shotton. I was concerned to read that the local government workforce is now the poor relation of the Welsh public sector in terms of conditions, pensions etc.” 3000 jobs lost last year & as many as 5000 jobs are on the line”. It gets worse; the Minister for Public Services has presided over a staggering increase in Welsh Government permanent & temporary staff by 391 to 5,777 in a couple of years. And the NHS had added 400 additional posts last year. No shortage of money for some?

Why is Welsh Gov lashing out lolly on the NHS? It’s all about votes Stupid! Welsh Government’s deeply on the mire as services in Wales compare dreadfully with England. What’s more important, Fire & Rescue or the NHS? Overspent Cardiff Governments on the ropes for lousy health provision? No contest! They don’t fund the Fire Brigade.

Years of profligate spending in the “Golden Triangle”, Cardiff, Swansea Newport has ensured other services & areas have been short changed & now Local Authorities are taking the financial hit. As Cllr Hilary Isherwood noted so eloquently in Council recently, “The (Cardiff’s) gravy train’s run out & Daddy’s not writing any more cheques”. This obviously hit home as Mr Tweeter rushed to defend his Labour masters but in an appallingly sexist & vile way. His ‘tweet’ was dreadful. The Press has dined out on the insulting smear against Hilary all week. The matter is very serious as our codes of conduct have bee ripped up. Where will it end?

FCC has plenty of experience of the Ombudsman as we know from the stressed 5 years of suspended Cllr Heesom, his demise created by our well paid officers. None of them breathe a word about the £2000.000 share of his legal fees; we the public have copped on behalf of Labour’s disgustingly unfair Ombudsman’s system. Two million would have extinguished quite a few chip pan fires!

WHERE’S LABOUR’S SUPPORT? EG THAT FESTIVE TEA TIME & CASINO NIGHT?

Moving on to a nicer topic, I joined Cllr Glenys Diskin wearing her chain as she’s Flintshire County Council’s Chairman & I got an invitation to tea with my chain as I’m the Chair of Hawarden Community Council. Mancot hall was heaving and there was a really good range of goodies to buy from local traders.

The Llwynegrin Singers were excellent as was the choice of cake. I even won a prize. I left with my vice chair, Cheryl Carver feeing it was a good afternoon well spent especially as the funds raised will swell her charities, Prostate cancer and the British Heart Foundation. The number of Glenys’s own Labour cllrs who attended could be counted on one hand. Three cheers for Cllr Chris Bothell who did turn up.

Glenys’s greatly successful Casino Night some days ago was the same story, an really poor Labour turn out. It was a really fun evening & raised over £500. I counted just two of her colleagues who had made the effort to raise funds for her charities that night. Most odd! I’m pleased to say that four Tory Cllr’s came to share Glenys super the Festive Tea. Get a grip Aaron & Bernie & order out the troops! You know the role of Flintshire Chairman is statutory, prestigious & very demanding. Glenys & her consort are doing a wonderful job made more challenging by Glenys’s personal demanding circumstances. Come on Labour. Give your Chairmen the support she deserves. As things stand, with juvenile, sexist remarks tweeted to the 1200 followers of the deputy leader & precious little support for your own Chair, your party is pitifully inadequate to hold the power to govern!

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