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Cabinet blasted over lack of action on Lichfield District Council cuts petition

Lichfield District Council’s cabinet has been accused of not listening to local residents after they opted to push ahead with proposed cuts.

The local authority’s leaders had been forced to revisit their Fit for the Future plans – which are aimed at helping to plug a £1.7million budget shortfall – after more than 1,500 people signed a petition.

Cllr Steve Norman

Cllr Steve Norman

However, the Cabinet have rejected a rethink of the proposals – a move which the Labour opposition group leader believes shows a lack of respect for those residents who had made their feelings known.

“Although I organised the petition I repeat what I have said on numerous occasions – it was only in response from concerned users of the facilities under threat,” said Cllr Steve Norman. “It wasn’t my petition or even a Labour petition, it was their petition.

“The petition and the 45 letters the Cabinet had received from supporters of the organisations under threat of closure, or a slow lingering death, should have been treated with more respect.”

Cllr Norman admitted there was also surprise when the timescale behind the budget cuts was admitted.

He explained: “It was revealed that they knew of the black hole in January but have not carried out any formal consultation with services users or even the other 50 councillors who are not members of the Cabinet until the Strategic Scrutiny Committee on June 20 – less than 20 days before the Cabinet was due to make a decision on the July 9.

“It was suggested by Councillor Greatorex, Cabinet Member for Community, that that there is no need to consult as they know what the public would say about these cuts and that it would cost £18,000 a month to delay the decisions although this figure referred to the whole of the Fit For The Future programme.

“Was any of this really true? We don’t know because there was no challenge on these assumptions from within the Cabinet but we ordinary elected members will have our chance at the next Council Meeting and it will be interesting to see if there are any challenges from the Conservative side of the chamber.”

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Founder of LichfieldLive and editor of the site.

3 Comments

  1. johnthemon

    30th July, 2013 at 7:15 pm

    “It wasn’t my petition or even a Labour petition, it was their petition.”

    So what are Labour going to do about it now?

  2. Foxy

    2nd August, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    Worry not. The Stickers are printed.

  3. Rob

    2nd August, 2013 at 10:14 pm

    “or a slow lingering death,”
    Ha ha ha – should be on the stage.