Tory budget defeat

Speaking at the Harrow council’s budget meeting on 27 February 2014, independent councillor Husain Akhtar said.
The last budget (Labour) was voted in because it showed some considerations for the borough’s profile emerging from the 2011 census, particularly in terms of the age groups and deprivation factor.
Since then because of the political mess created by some, now we have half baked budgets flying all over the place which have some good points and if put together, could result in best outcome for the residents of Harrow.
Some say and it is true that the Tory budget lacks new ideas because it is based on accumulating money from the perceived ‘unachievable savings’ and reallocating it to either vote grabbing activities or satisfying personal egos. Therefore, the four key components of their budget have several omissions:
For example:
    • under ‘Cleaner’ – no specific reference to setting and achieving carbon reduction targets
    • under ‘Safer’ – no specific reference to tackling prostitution – a well publicised attraction of Harrow
    • under ‘Fairer’ – no specific reference to improving and protecting Arts & cultural heritage of the borough
    • under ‘Effective organisation’ – no specific focus on the relationships with the regional and national governments despite Harrow’s frequent concerns about the allocation of grants etc – and of course ‘it is only the weak leaders who need a chief executive’
Overall, it a very irresponsible budget because it has no measureable commitment for a smooth financial transition to the next year when the council will be saving £25m.
As far as the budget amendments by the independent Labour group (ILG) are concerned, these are unachievable and therefore irrelevant because the group is very unlikely to be on the council after the May election.
On a vote, the Tory budget was miserably defeated. But during the recess granted by the mayor (member of ILG), Tory group made a deal and its significantly amended budget was voted in by the ILG vote.
Interesting that it was ILG vote last September that voted in the minority Tory administration!
Based on all this, a vote for ILG in May, would be a vote for Tories.