At Wednesday evening’s meeting (21 November 2012) of the full Council, Labour Councillor Hazel Simmons presented what she called a draft plan for leading the borough to financial security over the next three years. The Luton Borough Council Draft Prospectus will be further refined and then presented to the Council’s Executive Committee next month.
The 36 page document was discussed at the meeting and Liberal Democrat leader, David Franks, claims the document says some sensible things but the actions of the Labour Council leave him with little confidence they can make it work.
“It is impossible to square the statement in this document that the council has to achieve ‘best value for every public pound spent’ with the waste of nearly £500,000 on pop concerts, the fact the Council has lumbered the airport company with an unnecessary £96,000 corporation tax bill, spent £1M in recent years on a single engineering consultancy which is still engaged by the council, £67,000 over the last few years on a public relations consultant and faces an unfunded £9M liability to top up the busway budget.”
“They claim that government grant reductions will hit Luton harder than most other authorities in south east England when one of the biggest problems facing Luton is the immense waste of public money by its Labour council”
“The Prospectus says the Council wants to attract businesses to the town but it also lays out plans for dirty streets and flowerless parks. That’s not much of an incentive for existing Luton business to expand or for new businesses to move here”.