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MK Opposes "Part-Privatisation" of Council Services
Mebyon Kernow today opposed Cornwall Council entering into a multi-million pound joint venture project with a large private company, which would allow the private sector to deliver a massive range of council services including benefits, council tax, payroll, IT support, libraries and one-stop-shops.

The constitution of the unitary authority states that the decision whether to proceed with the scheme lies with the ten-strong Cabinet, which voted to seek final tenders on 30th July.

But the whole of the Council today debated a motion that stated: “it is not in the best interests of the people of Cornwall for the Council to enter into the proposed Strategic Partnership for Support Services,” in order to inform Cabinet members of the views of the wider membership of the authority.

The motion was proposed by Independent Councillor Andrew Wallis and seconded by MK Councillor Andrew Long (Callington).

The Council voted by 46 votes to 29 votes to support the moton. There were a total of 14 abstentions.
Speaking on behalf of Mebyon Kernow in the debate, Cllr Long told councillors much of the evidence used to support the joint venture was “pure conjecture.” He rubbished the claims about savings and the creation of jobs, describing the promises as “pie in the sky,” adding we are more likely to see “bacon-clad flying mammals.”

He also slammed the lack of democratic accountability in the proposed arrangement and condemned the proposal as “full of risks” and urged the Cabinet to “reverse its decision.”

Also speaking at the meeting, fellow MK Councillor Loveday Jenkin (Wendron) blasted the transfer of staff and huge budgets into a private sector company, which she said would “inevitably result in worse terms and conditions for local workers.” She also described the project as “not in the best interests of Cornwall.”

All five Mebyon Kernow councillors (Dick Cole, Stuart Cullimore, Andrew Long, Loveday Jenkin and Neil Plummer) backed the proposal not to enter into the proposed Strategic Partnership for Support Services.
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Published on 4th September 2012.

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