Second Council “Cabinet” meeting postponed
For the second month running the Council’s policy decision making body, the “Cabinet”, will not meet. The meeting was to have taken place on 2nd December. But now – like the meeting which was to have taken place on 4th November – it has been cancelled.
It means that no major decisions will have been taken since 7th October.
The next Cabinet meeting is not due to take place until 6th January, only a few weeks before the Councils budget has to be drawn up.
The indecision is being blamed on the chaotic state of the Council’s Labour group, which still has the largest number of members. Recently the Council Leader announced his resignation leading to an apparent power vacuum and crippling the decision making process.
Amongst the decisions which were due to be made were the future of the Guildhall. Labour plans a hugely expensive “digital media and arts centre” for the building but it unlikely that the new Council would agreed to the increased levels of borrowing required to fund the project. It is possible that the, relatively new, annex – which comprises mainly modern offices – may now be marketed separately.
Other agenda items, now shelved, include:
- An update on progress being made on the Local Plan
- Mid year review of progress on the multi million pound capital programme
- A similar update on revenue expenditure
- Care Bill charging plans
- Replacement of Ordnance Lane Homeless Hostel
- The future of the Burton Stone Lane Community Centre
- Report of the Financial Inclusion Steering Group 2014/15
- Rewiring Public Services: Business Cases (Labours service cuts programme)
- Award of Discretionary Rate Relief (affects charities and voluntary groups in the City)
- Nomination of Lord Mayor for 2015/16
- Review of Fees and Charges (e.g. car parking)
Senior Councillors have now had sufficient time (over 6 weeks) to come up with a workable way of making decisions in a balanced (hung) Council.
It had to do so in a similar situation, between 2007 and 2011, when there was little delay in dealing with issues..
It is now vital that all Parties agree to put the welfare of the City ahead of partisan political priorities.