Thursday, May 01, 2008

Full Council meeting (part 2)

So, as promised, a whole post on the Single Outcome Agreement (SOA) - you're beside yourself with excitement I can tell ...

... I know its not necessarily a headline-grabbing topic, but what we're potentially about to do in the next few weeks (as a Local Authority) will, I believe, lead to a serious diminution of local democracy - I have mentioned this in several previous posts: for example, here.

And in the debate at Full Council, when the SOA paper was being discussed, we had a truly astonishing moment when the Council Leader claimed that there was 'no connection between signing the SOA and freezing Council Tax' ...

... errrr, with respect, I think she should first look here, and then more crucially read the Concordat between COSLA and the Scottish Government here - in particular, she might like to look at the "Specified set of commitments" on page 4, particularly the bit that says:

"for the entire package to remain intact, and as part of their contribution to the new relationship, the Scottish Government and local government will each do what is required to ensure delivery of key government policies and programmes including: Freezing council tax rates in each local authority at 2007-08 levels."

The rest of the "specified set of commitments", and the fact that they are practically all unfunded, make very, very worrying reading financially...

... but what's much more worrying is that the Council Leader of the Capital city of Scotland clearly doesn't know what she's signing up to - 'no connection between signing the SOA and freezing the Council Tax'


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