22 March 2008

Tories cost H&F residents more

Residents in Hammersmith & Fulham have been hit by a succession of big increases in fees and charges for council services - from parking and recycling to adult education.

The largest hikes have been imposed by the Tories on the young, the old and the disabled. The cost of children's play services has gone up 121%. Meals on wheels prices have gone up 50%.

But the biggest scandal is the Tory plan to charge elderly, sick and disabled residents for home care services - despite a pledge at the 2006 council elections not to introduce home care charges.

Now the Tories will charge £12.40 an hour for home care. While Tory council leader Cllr Stephen Greenhalgh has just awarded himself a £5,000 pay rise.

No wonder he is known as the Fat Controller.

19 March 2008

How much longer for Cllr Alford?

Word has reached hfconwatch that Cllr Adronie Alford, Tory cabinet member for housing in H&F, is to be sacked shortly.

This follows the debacle in H&F Homes, an appalling one star inspection, and resignations of the chair and chief executive. Tenants are appalled at the Tory attacks on caretakers and sheltered housing wardens.

Cllr Awful is set to become H&F's next mayor as a sop. What a chain of events.

Issues for Sands End voters to consider

Sands End has borne the brunt of many Tory cuts in Hammersmith & Fulham - Peterborough primary school is being closed and sold to the French, Hurlingham & Chelsea secondary school was under threat for over a year, the Castle Club for children has been sold off and now Sands End laundry is being axed.

In total the Tories are making more than £36 million cuts in local services. These include:

Cuts to care services for elderly, sick and disabled residents £2,804,000
Cuts to environment, highways maintenance budget £1,633,000
Cuts to street cleaning and refuse collection budgets £980,000
Cuts to environmental public protection & safety budget £687,000
Cuts to the planning department £562,000
Cuts to the play and youth service £500,000
Cuts to the foster care service £180,000
Cuts to high maintenance care for elderly, sick and disabled residents £100,000
Growth in parking income £550,000
Cuts to library services £200,000
Cuts to mental health day care facilities £100,000
Cuts to children’s discretionary educational grants £90,000

18 March 2008

One down, 32 to go

Jeanette Bentley is the first Tory councillor to resign since the 2006 council elections in Hammersmith & Fulham.

The announcement means that a by-election is likely on 1 May in Sands End ward, scene of many of the Conservative cuts in education and community services.

13 March 2008

Bristow falls into leader's trough

Tory H&F cabinet member Paul Bristow has written a lengthy blog defending his leader, Cllr Stephen Greenhalgh, for getting paid £5,000 extra for doing something he should have been doing already (see Fat Controller blog below).

Cllr Bristow still doesn't explain why an additional payment is being made to the leader of the council. Ironically he suggests that the payment to the 'lead member for recruitment' is deserved because the council is getting rid of lots of jobs!

What Cllr Bristow also fails to declare is that not only is Cllr Greenhalgh his leader but he is also his employer. Obviously a key worker.

12 March 2008

Boris goes missing

Further to the blog below about H&F council's crime summit on 8 March, a council news release about the event was issued on 10 March.

Strangely the release fails to mention that Boris Johnson was present at the crime summit or that he gave a speech which he himself admitted amounted to electioneering.

An interesting case of re-writing history, which may not stand up to much scrutiny.

10 March 2008

H&F cabinet member goes AWOL

The Tory cabinet member for residents services in Hammersmith & Fulham has gone missing again. Or more to the point Paul Bristow seems more interested in residents in other parts of the country.

He has just missed out on becoming the Tory Parliamentary candidate for York Central. This disappointment follows several other attempts to get selected elsewhere.

You can always tell when Paul is away on the campaign trail because his blog goes mysteriously quiet. So desperate was he to fill the blank spaces that he even got Cllr Greg Smith to write a most boring diatribe about crime recently.

Still, I'm sure it won't stop Paul having a go at others for having a life beyond H&F. Touche Bristow!

08 March 2008

Council gives platform to Boris campaign

Hammersmith & Fulham council's annual crime summit today was turned into an election rally for Tory mayoral candidate Boris Johnson.

This latest abuse of council resources follows months and months of propaganda from the council attacking the Mayor of London and the government.

How can the council justify giving Boris a platform at today's event?

Fat controller jumps into trough

Why has Tory H&F council leader Stephen Greenhalgh been awarded a £5000 pay increase for doing something he should already be doing?

The last full council meeting agreed a new £5000 payment to the 'lead member for recruitment' - who happens to be the council leader. Nice work etc.

In the meantime the council also agreed £36 million cuts in local services.