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Stockport Council News

Lord Goddard. Shenanigans?

Blackstone Shambles Posted on Tue, April 16, 2013 20:12,-offerton.html

The developers, THI, raised the alarm some time ago on (would you guess?) cash flow. Cash running out fast and the developers didn’t like that – what part they have played in putting together costs, timetables etc is unclear, but THI must have had some inkling at the outset that 2 + 2 made considerably more than 4. “More” appears to be c£750,000 over the amount required to complete – for the moment at least!

Immediate concerns must surely turn to the role of senior councillors in approving the bail out in the first place and having no idea where the extra cash would come from. Could they have in mind that bottomless pit – the SMBC taxpayers both domestic and business? Iain Roberts, the Regeneration Man, should have been aware of the problem, although his only commentary is that source of funds was uncertain. But that possibly would be the New Homes Bonus – a grant which central government makes to local government for increasing new homes. However, this must have been an obvious source in the beginning, and surely an application would be (correctly) rejected on the grounds that housing had been a major part of the original miscalculated scheme cost and, as such, could not be counted twice. Clearly incompetence on the councillors’ part lies at the heart of the problem.

Therefore, instead of agreeing to the bail out so readily, the Labour Group’s statement (of the obvious) that questions need to be answered should be taken seriously. The project shoudl be put on hold pending much more background being examined. No more blank cheques please!

For the record, who are THI and do they have Friends At Court – they seem to be the driving force where the Council is patently not.

Why does Offerton keep coming up in the news on redevelopment, disgraced shopping precincts etc?

Mrs Stevenson – is she behind with her filing?

Bypass Posted on Tue, April 16, 2013 19:49

Mrs Stevenson, who is, I think, project manager for the bypass, would appear to be in a terrible mess with her filing, which does not auger well. I asked for the SEMMMs meeting minutes – Mrs Stephenson should have them all neatly filed, preferably in her computer. But Mr Simon Oldfield, FOIA Officer at Stockport Council, says it would take 40 hours to locate them.

“Dear Mrs Oliver,

I am writing in response to your request for information (ref FOI 6444).

The relevant Council Service(s) has searched for the requested information and our response is as follows.

The initial request would result in over 18 hours of officer time. We asked for clarification/refinement which we hoped would have reduced the time element. As the clarification you provided was for all minutes – this did not refine the request.

Therefore the information you have requested in this request is exempt from disclosure under Section 12 (Fees) of the Freedom of Information Act.

It is anticipated that this request alone would take in excess of 40 hours to locate and retrieve the requested information……….”