Tweets get discarded very quickly so we thought these few from 24th November 2014 should be preserved, in the cloud - for posterity - they chronicle the Dear Leaders renewed attempt to re-write recent history via social media but has clearly backfired. Have a look through and see what you think.
It is no secret that since coming to power in 2003, the power struggle in the Peterborough City Council has been like a replay of The Sopranos mixed with elements of North Korean style of democracy. Just put the word Cereste in the search box (top Left) on the Peterborough Tribune website and you'll see what we mean.
Clearly the Conservatives are up for a spanking next May by which time Cllr Seatons WACCO austerity programme will have kicked in, but senior council officers will continue living the champagne lifestyle, enjoying the massive pay hikes voted through by the Tory dominated employment committee.
How is it that Midwives are striking over as derisory ONE PERCENT pay rise but senior council officers in near bankrupt Peterborough can be awarded 30%,40% pay hikes? Even better how have they managed to keep it out of the red tops? And why is Gillian Beasley, the Chief Executive still in post? Her financial management over the last few years has been a recurring disaster, and at the end of the day she should carry the can, if she cannot steer the council along a more stable path.
Council meetings. The Dear Leader rightly says council meetings are recorded, the trouble is as we have found the contemporaneous audio recording differs from the later published print version. It is in effect tidied up and sections sometimes missed out.
So at best it is an edited, selective transcript and therefore not a true contemporaneous note, that is fed back in council documents. Simply the edited published transcripts might not meet legal evidence standard...you'd have to go back to the audio recording. The council still refuses to stream council meetings live.
Another factor is that most of the important decisions are not made within the council chamber but in the behind closed doors private meetings before each public set piece. These are not recorded, although we do get substantive leaks from time to time. Not everyone buys the Dear Leaders autocratic management style. Which may work when times are good, but rubbish when it all goes wrong. So The Dear Leader has a very good idea of how voting will turn out, even before the public meeting starts. Job done.
We term it 'robotic voting.' In our fantasy word Marco Cereste has a faded blue string tied to the voting arms of his robotic councillors, one tug and all the arms rise as one - with the exception of Cllr Turnip who (like Corporal Jones in Dads Army) is usually a few seconds late or looks furtively at his puppy walker (Adult Care Home mouthpiece) Cllr Sheila Scott, to see how the others are doing - we've watched it - fascinating stuff.
Clearly under the Dear Leaders direction Cllr Seaton (who says he worked for a Bank but we hear he simply tinkled with the Banks computer systems, so not real banking as such) he is tasked with managing the consultation, but the questions on the free SurveyMonkey software are frankly rubbish and self serving.
The one saving grace is that in the comments section, it will allow you to upload a substantive document, or try Budget@peterborough.gov.uk We've uploaded our thoughts, you might like to do the same.
However the consultation turns out, you might like to consider that whoever stands for election next May is going to have to operate saddled with a mountain of built-up debt on their shoulders, or like some councillors just turn up for key meetings, pocket the allowances, deep mine the available postal votes, keep their heads down knowing that with the exception of a couple of wards where the Asian vote polls in excess of 50%! they might scrape through. The physical turnout in recent years, at the polling booths is around 33% of those who eligible to vote, will see them safe to coast for another FIVE YEARS.
We make no bones in suggesting that Cllr Christopher Harper (CON Stanground East) has been a disaster for the small ward of Stanground East. Intending candidates might like to consider it only needs a vote of around 400 to secure this seat, whereas it needs some 800 votes for a Stanground Central seat. We invite all potential candidates to seriously consider this ward first...
But what do we do? Make no mistake, it is going to get much worse. There is no money, and there will be less next year. We have an overstuffed Council Payroll , who having expensively outsourced most departments and slashed services. We should also cut the number of councillors by half. Cllr Cereste might still have robotic voting in place, if he is re-elected but at least there will be fewer excuses for the continuing financial meltdown that is being signposted.
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