Monday, 19 January 2009

Bumper Book of "Local" Government Waste...

... is what we are very consciously avoiding in our budget plans for 2009/10 (even though the book isn't yet written, I reckon it's only a matter of time). In fact, the past two years' budget have had a phenomonal amount of success is drawing out unnecessary line items that, whilst good in one sense, are not central or essential to the working of the borough, and are needed in order to keep our budget balanced.

This year is particularly challenging for all sorts of reasons, but even so, even with the 'Star Chambers' (challenge sessions where heads of service at Waverley have their budget reviewed in great detail and are requested to submit saving proposals) complete, and the budget drafted, we can still find some items that should go.

Tonight at the Corporate Overview & Scrutiny committee a number of items were highlighted including:

(1) £54,000 for a Marquee Theatre Space; and
(2) £35,000 for headstone risk assessment.

It's not certain these will get removed, but, the whole point of the O&S committees is too provide a rigorous challenge to the plans of the council, to ensure that anything approved is actually required. In our present economic situation, it's only right that items such as the ones above have to be proved beyond doubt to be important for 2009/10, and essential to the carrying out of Waverley's duties.

More news as we get closer to the full council at which the budget - in whatever form - must be approved.

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