30 September 2010

Tip-off sparks independent paper row

Why did H&F council announce on 28 September that it is going to tender the production of H&F News - just 24 hours before the government signalled the end of council-run newspapers (see previous hfconwatch blog)?

Who tipped off Cllr Greenhalgh that his mate Pickles was calling a halt to his propaganda machine?

Is the council's wheeze of turning H&F news into a 'partnership arrangement with an independent news provider' a clever move? Or a cynical attempt to get round the government's announcement?

The H&F council press release states: 'While H&F wants no say in editorial coverage, it wants to use the newspaper to communicate and engage with residents in allocated space clearly set aside for the council.'

So not very independent then!

Act before it's too late

Stop the Tories selling off the local community's buildings in Hammersmith & Fulham.

Respond to the council consultation ASAP by going to: http://www.lbhf.gov.uk/Directory/Council_and_Democracy/Consultation_and_complaints/Consultations/ and access H&F Buildings Consultation questionnaire

The consultation formally ends at 23.59hrs on Friday, 1st October 2010, according to the covering letter from the council leader.

29 September 2010

Pickles signals end of H&F News

New proposals to stop taxpayers' money being squandered on town hall newspapers or hired lobbyists have been announced by Communities Secretary Eric Pickles. The move signals the end of H&F council's fortnightly propaganda paper, H&F News.

A consultation published today outlines new proposals to tighten up the publicity rules for councils so they guard against campaigning with public funds.

The proposals set out specific rules to stop municipal newspapers being published more often than four times a year and to prevent the hiring of lobbyists. Instead, Ministers say councils should redirect resources into protecting front-line services.

H&F leader Cllr Greenhalgh and his fellow Tories look like they have been squashed by Pickles. So farewell then H&F News...

22 September 2010

H£F pawnbroking

Yet again the latest edition of Tory council propaganda H&F News comes wrapped in an advert for 'cash & cheque express'. Pawnbroking for the 21st century.

What does this say about the borough and the state of the economy in Tory Britain? H&F now stands for 'Hard-up and F***ed'.

16 September 2010

Phibbs writes about...Phibbs

Not content with getting H&F council to press release his 105 ways for cutting red tape, Tory Cllr Harry Phibbs has gone one step further.

He has put on his journalist hat and written a diary story for the Evening Standard about his 105 recycled ideas. That's enough Phibbs.

11 September 2010

H&F council experiments with children's future

Tory H&F council is at the forefront of cuts and experiments which will affect our children's future:
- the council's education department is being merged with Westminster council and also it seems Kensington & Chelsea
- three so-called free schools are being set up in the borough (out of 16 in total across the country)
- meanwhile existing schools are being robbed of resources with £200 million of improvements to local schools axed
- children's services are to be privatised as part of a pathfinder experiment which will affect some of the most vulnerable, looked after children
- and children's centres staff are all on notice with the council poised to close several of the borough's children's centres next year

None of the above was in the Conservatives' manifesto before the recent local elections.

06 September 2010

H&F council's waste on comics and weather forecasts

Tonight's Evening Standard highlights profligate spending by Tory H&F council on comics, weather forecasts, 'free running' and meetings at the Old Ship pub.

Jokes about piss-ups in breweries come to mind. Given free weather forecasts are widely available on the net and the fact that the council failed to grit the roads in advance of last winter's snow storms, perhaps councillors have been reading the comics down the pub. Or is the Old Ship part of the Tories' accommodation strategy?

For the official response, visit: http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-23874539-town-halls-defend-spending-on-pet-cats-free-running--and-a-wolfman.do

01 September 2010

Sign up to save H&F

As Tory H&F council plans to close and sell off many local services and facilities, community groups are fighting back.

You can sign the petition against the closure of Barons Court library here: http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/savebaronscourtlibrary/

You can also go to Palingswick House - where lots of local voluntary organisations are based - to sign the petition to stop the council selling it off. Just visit Palingswick House to sign the petition form on the table in the entrance at 241 King Street W6 9LP. For an electronic copy of the petition, email: phlmgt@talktalkbusiness.net