Basildon Council officers are given 'blank cheques'

Basildon Recorder: Basildon Council officers are given 'blank cheques' Basildon Council officers are given 'blank cheques'

BASILDON Council has been accused of giving unelected officers “blank cheques” with plans to let them spend £1million without approval from councillors.

The Tory-run cabinet wants to allow council officers or single cabinet members to be able to endorse expenditure up to a £1million.

The existing limit is £400,000 before the cabinet has to give its consent. Opposition members say major budget decisions will not be scrutinised and will vote against the plans on Thursday.

Byron Taylor, leader of the Labour party, said: “The Tory- Ukip coalition has just given council officers a book of blank cheques.

“Residents will be pretty unimpressed officers can spend a £1million without any scrutiny by democratically elected councillors.

“Times are tough and money is tight.

“Labour wants to make sure that every penny is spent wisely.”

Basildon Council says councillors will still be able to scrutinise decisions if the proposal is passed.

A spokeswoman said: “While it is proposed the value at which contracts requiring a cabinet decision be increased from £400,000 to £1million to allowmore flexibility with the contract award, all of these contracts would have been scrutinised via a tender or competitive process.

“Governance, audit and risk, scrutiny, as well as call-in procedures are all in place to ensure probity and the changes will be subject to future internal audit reviews.”

Comments (5)

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9:47am Tue 15 Jul 14

John Right says...

Petty cash, has unlimited methods of being used..
Petty cash, has unlimited methods of being used.. John Right
  • Score: 2

9:55am Tue 15 Jul 14

Howard Cháse says...

That's so they can restock the cellar and larder in the Ale and Pies club and also for the requisition of solid gold pocket linings for the Councillers. Allegedly.
That's so they can restock the cellar and larder in the Ale and Pies club and also for the requisition of solid gold pocket linings for the Councillers. Allegedly. Howard Cháse
  • Score: 2

1:27pm Tue 15 Jul 14

cropped hero says...

so if this story is true what will councillors be doing? If they have decided not to get invloved in expenditure of less than £1million what will they be doing. Dealing with planning applications, licensing applications and ensuring roads are clean (which they aren't) and rubbish is collected ( which it rarely is) and providing a decent number of affordable homes to rent (which it hasnt ). What is the purpose of Baz Council?
so if this story is true what will councillors be doing? If they have decided not to get invloved in expenditure of less than £1million what will they be doing. Dealing with planning applications, licensing applications and ensuring roads are clean (which they aren't) and rubbish is collected ( which it rarely is) and providing a decent number of affordable homes to rent (which it hasnt ). What is the purpose of Baz Council? cropped hero
  • Score: 2

1:56pm Tue 15 Jul 14

ThisYear says...

'Blank cheques" and brown envelopes go together like tories and corruption
'Blank cheques" and brown envelopes go together like tories and corruption ThisYear
  • Score: 5

4:51pm Wed 16 Jul 14

Last Poster says...

ThisYear wrote:
'Blank cheques" and brown envelopes go together like tories and corruption
You are so right! Slowly, slowly catchee monkey!
[quote][p][bold]ThisYear[/bold] wrote: 'Blank cheques" and brown envelopes go together like tories and corruption[/p][/quote]You are so right! Slowly, slowly catchee monkey! Last Poster
  • Score: 1

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