This is a terrible moment for this post. But that’s really the point.
I want people to comment here if they have something nice to say about their MP or about British politicians or the political system.
Like anyone, I have some very serious criticisms of the conduct of British politicians. In many ways I think our political system is broken. Many of my columns are devoted to the question of how to change it. But there are plenty of places to read that sort of stuff today.
I thought we would try something different.
Here are a few positive things I think about MPs:
I think most work very hard, putting in long hours and working weekends. There may be other jobs that are harder, or less well paid, or more inconvenient. But this doesn’t detract from the hard work MPs do.
I think many now do good community work, and are in touch with their constituents’ difficulties. This is not universal, but it is common.
No rude rants please………
Great to meet the the Police ,Residents , PCSO’S and City WEST. Meeting was a great success Well done
PC barrett and the team.
All Council services are tested to see if they give best value for local people. We aim to achieve this by continually reviewing our services to ensure that they:
- best meet people’s needs
- are provided by the right people
- are of a standard that compares with the best elsewhere
- are provided at the lowest possible cost
- are always improving.
Cross-party scrutiny committees review the Council’s work and make suggestions for improvements to the full Council. They focus on the needs and opinions of residents and organisations. They have the power to challenge decisions made by Cabinet.
Was it a dream or was democratic principle to be taken away. well keep in tune and i will let you know
The answers ?
Well i am at loss, i have read today in First some ideas.
- Work with partners on reducing rates.
- Select a senior officer to champion the strategy
- Priortise sex education
- Provide training on sex education for partner organisations Provide well resourced youth centers
- Improve the economic emotional and health outcomes for teenage parents.
Well lets look at it. have we not seen all this before? come on how about we come into the real word, I sat as part of a Children’s scrutiny committee discussing the same topic three years ago. The results nothing why because we talk and talk but we don’t take measures to cure. Most of the people on that group where older than me and sorry to say i am past it. I asked a question .
I am sixteen i wish to try sex for the first time when i leave this building where do i get condoms, i did it for shock value and it worked, but no answers no body had any idea. One person who attended the committee gave advice on sex, i asked about funding she said it’s all most gone. So how do we go about it. How do we end this down ward spiral.
Well sex education my family never gave any to me and sorry to say i was the same with my son’s. I joked and said to them do you think it’s time to talk about the Birds and The Bees! he said what did i want to know.
When i grew up teenage pregnancy was unheard of ,is it our fault do we seem to except it as the norm?
Is it to easy a way for some people to shirk there obligations to society.
If we carry on are we risking the breakdown of family structures
Morals is it a failing of the family,the School, the Church, us in general.
Well i will try anything that helps,but remember one thing if we fail do we have millions of young mums and dads destined for state hand outs and no future.
Extra money to recruit and train social workers is a real success for the LGA and the first steps in tackling the difficulties councils face protecting children. A situation highlighted by the Liberal Democrats in our local budget proposals. Of course our comments where not taken on board by labour. This issue is raised in full in the copy of First. What ever money comes from central the Central labour Government will of course not cure all ills but i hope it makes a start to find a cure to the problem. We as Liberal Democrats understand fully the urgency of the matter and support any method which will ease the problem.
The Local Government Association said its research revealed that three in five local authorities had made staff reductions since the end of last year and a similar number were planning to axe posts in the next 12 months.
Cuts have been made across the board, with senior and middle management affected as well as frontline workers as councils make “tough decisions” to balance their budgets and keep council tax down.
The study showed that almost half of the councils which have made cuts say that senior management posts have been axed.
Nine out of 10 councils in London have axed jobs and eight in 10 will do so in the next 12 months.
Job cuts are mostly being made from a mixture of voluntary redundancies, compulsory redundancies and posts not being replaced.
Council employers have formally tabled a pay offer of 0.5% for this financial year to local government unions and have warned that a higher pay rise would lead to councils laying off even more staff.
The LGA said councils were being hit hard by the recession and expected income to drop by £2.5 billion this financial year.
Sir Jeremy Beecham, vice chairman of the LGA, said: “Just as the private sector is having to cut back during tough times, so too are councils faced with incredibly difficult decisions.
“It is a highly unpleasant decision for any council to cut jobs but they also understand that local people are suffering because of the recession.
“As the recession continues to bite hard, we fully expect councils to keep on cutting jobs over the course of the next 12 months. Councils are having to tighten their belts in exactly the same way as hard-pressed families.
“Town halls are being forced to look at almost every aspect of their spending. A large number of councils are cutting posts in middle and senior management.
“We would expect councils to make efficiency savings before cuts and they will be trying to protect posts that provide effective management.
“It is particularly regrettable to have to cut frontline staff, but this demonstrates the bleak financial situation that councils are in.
“Where cuts to some frontline staff are made, councils are doing all they can to ensure that vital local services stay in place for people being affected by the recession.
“Councils are being hit by a perfect storm caused by the recession. Income is dropping away fast at a time when more and more people are turning to councils to help them through tough times.
“It is vital that this year’s pay settlement is affordable to the taxpayer and councils while at the same time making sure that local government continues to be an attractive place to work.
“If the pay settlement is set too high then local authorities will have no choice but to lay off staff, which neither the unions nor the employers want to see.”
A spokesman for Unison said: “It’s appalling that local government workers, who have contributed billions of pounds in efficiency savings over the past few years, should be threatened with the dole.
“This is typical employer scaremongering to try to justify a paltry 0.5% (3p an hour) pay offer. The majority of local councils have budgeted for 2.2% to 2.5% for this year’s pay rise but want to get away with paying pennies.”
Senior members of David Cameron’s shadow cabinet have been implicated in the parliamentary expenses scandal.
The tactic has been criticised by another member of the shadow cabinet.
Other senior Conservatives who made questionable claims included Alan Duncan, the shadow leader of the House of Commons, who oversees the party’s expenses policy. He was officially warned over his gardening bills after attempting to claim more than £7,000 in two years.
David Willetts, the shadow universities secretary, claimed more than £100 for workmen to replace 25 light bulbs at his home. Oliver Letwin, the chairman of the Conservatives’ policy team, claimed more than £2,000 to replace a leaking pipe under a tennis court.
Two members of the Conservative front bench, Mr Gove and Cheryl Gillan, have agreed to repay some expense claims.
Last night Mr Cameron, the Conservative leader, apologised for the way in which the expenses system had been used by many MPs. “We have to acknowledge just how bad this situation is and just how angry the public are,” he said. “We have to start by saying that the system we had and used was wrong and that we are sorry about that.”
Mr Cameron has pledged to take firm action against Conservative MPs found to have exploited the system. It was not clear, however, whether he was preparing to act over the allegations against some of his most senior colleagues.
Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, said that a “culture of abuse” had developed among MPs claiming expenses. Lord Naseby, a Conservative peer and former deputy speaker, said that the standing of Parliament had been brought “right down into the pits” and there may be a need for an immediate general election.
The Daily Telegraph has obtained details of expenses claims made by MPs from all political parties over the past five years.
The expenses scandal detailed over the past three days has hit the Cabinet, extended to the entire Government and is now shown to stretch to the highest levels of the Conservative party.
The Telegraph Expenses Files on the shadow Cabinet disclose that:
- Michael Gove, the shadow education secretary, spent more than £7,000 in five months furnishing a London property in 2006 before “flipping” his second home designation to a new property he bought in Surrey. He then claimed more than £13,000 in stamp duty and other fees from his Parliamentary expenses for this property. Mr Gove’s behaviour surprised colleagues because the former journalist was only elected in 2005 and is close to Mr Cameron.
- Andrew Lansley, the shadow health secretary, spent thousands of pounds renovating a thatched Tudor country cottage shortly before selling it. He redecorated inside and out with premium paint at a cost of £2,000 and re-shingled the driveway. He then “flipped” his expenses to a Georgian flat in London where he claimed for thousands of pounds in furnishings including a Laura Ashley sofa.
- Francis Maude, the shadow minister for the cabinet office, attempted to claim the mortgage interest on his family home in Sussex. This arrangement was rejected by the Fees Office. Two years later, Mr Maude bought a flat in London a few minutes walk from a house he already owned. He then rented out the other property and began claiming on the new flat: the taxpayer has since covered nearly £35,000 in mortgage interest payments.
- Chris Grayling, the shadow home secretary, claimed thousands of pounds to renovate a London flat 17 miles from his family home. Mr Grayling already owned three properties within the M25 but still bought the flat with loans subsidised by the taxpayer. He then claimed for work on the property for up to a year after it was carried out. This enabled him to claim close to the maximum amount allowable under the expenses system during different years.
- Cheryl Gillan, the shadow Welsh secretary, claimed for dog food on her expenses. Last night, she said that she would repay the money.
The disclosures underline the cross-party nature of the parliamentary expenses scandal. Over the past few days, the Telegraph has exposed the exploitation of the allowances by senior Labour figures including members of the Cabinet. Liam Fox, the shadow defence secretary, has condemned the “flipping” of the designation of second homes by ministers.
“The idea was always that ministers were deemed to have their primary residence in London when they were members of the government,” he said. He called for a “hard and fast rule” about what constitutes an MP’s primary home.
Mr Cameron said last week that claims by Conservative MPs that were outside the rules would be “looked at”. “They just have to explain themselves,” he said. “That’s what all my MPs are going to have to do, that’s what I will have to do and I think that’s what the public deserve – they are angry about it and they want it sorted out.”
Not all members of the shadow Cabinet were implicated. Mr Cameron and William Hague, his deputy and shadow foreign secretary, both had relatively straightforward claims. George Osborne, the shadow chancellor, claimed for a chauffeur using his office allowance.
If any one Labour, Conservative ,BNP, Green ,or Monster raving loony party wish to post please do. BUT please argue your case, or if i put forward a view and you disagree please say so in a polite manner. I will post anything, but today i have removed some post that where offensive. Salford Labour run this city and if i disagree with something they do i will say so. but it must be in a fair and open way, you will understand my distaste to some of the tone of the BNP’S leaflets but if people wish to vote for them that it there right, we live in a democracy. I am proud to represent Salford i think it is a great place to live, i fight daily for the residents, the same will go for Labour councillors, Conservatives, and the independents, if i disagree with how Labour run this city i have been free to say so. but i also understand the people of this city voted them in the same as the Government, it is my job to try the best way i can to ask them to vote for my party. If i fail it is my fault no one else’s. Far to often we take the easy way out using the blame culture. The many post i have received have been over immigration ,job losses,health. pensions, crime. if you wish a Liberal Democrat view i will freely offer it and also offer you the platform to state your case. So cut out the rants and lets talk