I have let this blog go a bit lately – far too much going on and too little time to have a good rant about everything. That is of course the reason I set this up in the first place – to give me an outlet for my more opinionated outbursts, reflecting my opinions and mine alone.
So, what has been irking me recently – where to start.
It goes without saying that at the centre of it is usually RCT Council or the Labour party in some form. Recently even some of their own members are getting a little sick of their antics, although not it appears sick enough to leave the party.
There was a proposal to increase the salaries of three Officers which was somehow leaked to the press. Well when I say somehow, I leaked it, based on information from an extremely disgruntled Labour Councillor who has had a few run ins with his Cabinet colleagues. Two of the three proposals were for increased responsibilities as a result of not replacing another Director, and so were fair enough. It was the third that caused outrage.
The third Officer was our old mate Christian Hanagan – yes you know the story by now, former Labour candidate, probably still a Labour member, son of a Cabinet Member. Given a job originally as the then Council leader’s PA and then moved up the ranks to a completely new job as Head of PR and Strategy. This job did not exist previously and was given to him without it being advertised or open to any other applicant.
He now sits at the top table for Council meetings and at the right hand of the Leader for Cabinet meetings. A Chief Executive in waiting it seems.
It appears that our disgruntled Labour Cllr wasn’t the only one to see that giving him a pay rise of 15% right now was a bad idea, and the proposal was turned down by the group. Well, for now anyway, although it would not surprise me if they found another way of doing it.
I was also made aware of a secret Cabinet meeting which took place two weeks before the public meeting with exactly the same agenda. Now we have suspected that these take place all along but this was the first time someone had handed us proof. It certainly explains why there is so little discussion at the “open” meetings.
The real question though is if these Labour members are so unhappy with what is going on then why don’t they speak up themselves? Why stay with the party? Not that I am complaining at anyone feeding me information of course. I am more than willing to spread it to a wider audience, but I cannot understand the attitude.