3:34 PM on 17/02/2015
The arrogance of Louise Goldsmith and her Cabinet colleagues never ceases to amaze. This disgraceful budget includes the removal of five operational fire engines, plus cuts in the number of firefighters in the County. Yet the budget architect, Councillor Michael Brown, defies anybody to find cuts to frontline services within it.
Well, anyone with common sense will defy him. You cannot get more frontline than fire engines and firefighters that are used to save lives and property. The County Council’s own research showed that these cuts will increase response times, cost more lives and increase property damage. Only a fool, or someone cynically putting their politics ahead of public safety, would dare to suggest that is investing in key services.
Louise Goldsmith mentions that West Sussex is the only county council in the south east to freeze council tax. Councillor David Barling said, “It is often about what they don’t tell you that you need to focus on”, which is good advice when it comes to this Cabinet. Clearly illustrated by Louise Goldsmith who fails to mention that West Sussex has also held the worst record in the south east for fire deaths and fire casualties for two years running. That is the real cost of cuts to meet the council tax freeze.
She even claims that 300 inquests is an ‘achievement’. With that distorted logic, you can perhaps see why she is not bothered by the extra deaths her fire cuts will cause. Please show them these cuts are a disgrace and sign the “Stop fire engine and firefighter cuts in West Sussex” petition on the West Sussex Epetitions website.
Dr Andrew Emerson comments
10:48 PM on 22/02/2015
I couldn’t agree more, SWSF. Only ‘nearly 8,000 deaths’ registered? Are they really trying?
I wonder how much money could be saved by doing away with the County Council’s ‘cabinet’ and reverting to the status quo ante?
Given the inflated salaries these clowns pay themselves at our expense, perhaps more than enough would be saved to keep the five fire engines and obviate the planned cuts in the number of firefighters in the county.
A little less self-promotion would not be amiss either. How much money could be saved each year by scrapping the Council’s newsletter, in which they promote themselves by telling us residents how well they are doing? I believe it may be called ‘Connections’. I feel sure most of us would rather have a more effective fire service than receive this waste of paper through our doors.
Finally, for now, Louise Goldsmith: take your hand away from your face; it makes you look insincere.
11:16 AM on 26/02/2015
Just to illustrate your point Dr Emerson.
Cost of 3 fire engines at Midhurst, Petworth & Storrington = £63,000.
Cost of the Cabinet = £242,902 + expenses.