Council's 'breathtaking arrogance' slammed in privatisation row
3:36pm Wednesday 5th September 2012 in News
Cornwall Council ’s ruling cabinet has announced it is going to push on with plans to privatise its services – despite councillors voting against the scheme at a full council meeting on Tuesday.
Steve Double, the Council’s portfolio holder for environment, waste management and shared services, said the cabinet had already considered the issues raised at yesterday’s meeting and would press ahead with the scheme regardless.
Councillor Andrew Wallis, who put forward the motion against the plans at the meeting, has accused the cabinet of ‘breathtaking arrogance’.
In a statement issued this afternoon, councillor Double said: “As I said yesterday all the concerns which were raised by Members during the debate have already been considered by the Cabinet.
“The reality is that this proposal, which brings together the best of the private and public sector in an innovative partnership, is vital to the future delivery of Cornwall Council services.”
He added: “The facts are that entering into this partnership will help us to protect frontline services, create 500 new jobs and reduce costs by at least £5m a year. “This is surely in the best interests of the people of Cornwall.”
Councillor Wallis responded: “I am extremely disappointed once again by the cabinet’s decision to ignore the democratic will of the council.
“They may not agree with the decision of member’s, but they should not just ignore it.
“This is just another example of the breathtaking arrogance of the leadership of the council.”
Liberal Democrat group leader Jeremy Rowe added: “I am appalled at this latest display of arrogance from the Conservatives at County Hall.
“At yesterday's meeting more than half of the democratically elected Councillors present voted to stop this privatisation process, yet today a select few tucked away in the top floor bunker in Truro have decided to ignore that clear view from the Council and plough on regardless.
“They have no mandate for this outsourcing project but they still have the arrogance to assume they know better than just about everybody else. It is a black day for democracy in Tory-led Cornwall.”
The contract will now be put out to tender, with a final decision on which company to partner with made by the cabinet in November.