Author Topic: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?  (Read 3112 times)

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Offline Geoff Reid

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The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« on: December 14, 2012, 03:20:53 PM »

In 2009, Cllr Roderick Bluh, leader of Swindons Conservative group of councillors and leader of Swindon Borough Council, issued the follwing Christmas message to the party faithful:

Quote from: Roderick Bluh, leader of Swindon Borough Council[b
Firstly, my best wishes for Christmas and the New Year.   2009 has without doubt been a challenging year dealing with the recession and the impact created by it.   Whilst the worst of the immediate crisis may be over, in my opinion, the real long-term impact has yet to be seen.


The new realities going forward will require everyone involved in policymaking to be very professional and pragmatic in their approach, creative in their thoughts and most importantly remain positive about what can be achieved.  The problems will remain to be overcome whatever happens, the important thing is how you deal with them.
 

I believe our record of achievement in 2009 will be proven to be our best yet:


1. Without any doubt Swindons exposure to media has hugely successful.   In 2009 Swindon has made national news over speed cameras, Radio 1 Big Weekend, Wi-Fi and now Disneyworld.    A national papers newsdesk told me that he used to shrug his shoulders with disinterest when Swindon was mentioned whereas now his ears prick up and he pays attention.  Similar comments have been made by others.  Wherever I go people are keen to know more about what we are doing.
 

2. By the time the Budget is put to bed we will have delivered the best Budget to-date with the lowest council tax to-date with the least frontline impact to-date.  I have always said that I wanted this to be so pre-Elections, particularly the General.  My thanks to the enormous effort of Lead Members and Officers for the hard work and professional way they have tackled the most challenging situation to date.  My special thanks to Mark Edwards who has re-invigorated the whole process and retained a strategic focus that will be so required in future years. 
 

3. We finally achieved our 3* rating and in so many areas we are actually 4*.   Children Services have had a fantastic year with our education results improving above the national trend, the Fostering and Adoption Service getting an Outstanding Rating which may well prove to be best in Country.  We are anticipating an excellent Ofsted report for our Safeguarding of Children early in the New Year.  In addition several new schools have opened in the year with others being built.   Well done to Garry and his team.
 

4. Speed Camera policy has been accepted by the Police as moving the debate forward and our new approach to Road Safety is being seen as a potential national pilot.  It also changed Conservative Party national policy as announced at Party Conference.  Well done to Pete for his challenge to the Status quo.


5. The organisation and success of the Radio 1 Big Weekend has put Swindon firmly on the map as a music destination and the Oasis has had a brilliant year with the quality of acts performing there.   Music Festival organisers are now aware of Swindon as a place to host and we may see good results in future.   Well done to Phil and his team for such a quality event.


6. By the time midnight falls on New Years Eve, SCS will be a stand-alone commercial company owned by the Council.  The business plan shows that the outcomes over the coming years will produce strong revenues to be returned to the council to support our budgets.   This is a superb example of how this Administration is changing failure into success.   Everyone has worked tirelessly to make this happen.


7. Recycling has proved to be hugely successful with mixed plastics now added.  Our rate of 48% compares with national average of 37%.  Fionuala is tirelessly working with Officers to improve recycling, waste and Streetsmart services.


8. Regeneration has and is bucking the national trend despite what you might hear from some quarters.   Activity is moving with public realm and open space work.  The Parade redevelopment starts in the New Year.   The MUSE and College Site schemes are both expected to start in the summer of 2010 totalling £600m of investment.  If this happens we will probably be the only place in the UK to achieve such activity in the current climate.   The new New Swindon Company has been delivered, endorsed overwhelmingly by the business community and huge thanks to Phil for what was a big piece of work.
 

9. The Adult Social Care budgets remain challenging but are receiving huge attention.  Despite the pressures of demographics, ageing population etc we are still delivering strong improvement in the services as evidenced by the inspection reports.   David has one of the most challenging jobs in Cabinet because of the pressures and needs our robust support to find better solutions.   The number of people over 65 in Swindon has risen by 20% since 1991 twice the national rate of increase.

 
10. In areas of Leisure, Connecting People Connecting Places and Enforcement my other Cabinet colleagues are working on the transformational agenda.
 

11. Finally my thanks to everyone in Group for work on committees and advisory groups for contributing to such a successful year.

 

There is much much more I could add but overall this is a record of achievement which builds on everything achieved since 2003. 

 

Looking forward, the New Year will bring its own challenges not least the issue of letters to Employees re Single Status.   This is the culmination of a huge piece of work which has presented a whole host of legal and financial challenges.  The outcome will be for the organisation on a much improved system of pay and grading for the future.  It will however impact on large numbers (29%) of people adversely.   There will undoubtedly be an effect on morale and other implications.  It is vital that no-one speaks out of line and sticks to key messages which I am asking Douglas to circulate to you all.    My thanks to Fionuala who has very professionally managed as the Lead Member on this very difficult issue.

 

We have both the local and general elections only a number of weeks away now and it is essential that we all work a one team to ensure the best possible outcome.  Our focus should be electoral success to deliver 2 Conservative MPs for Swindon, a Conservative Government and maintain a strong Conservative council.

 

Sadly there are some in our group who for their own entirely personal reasons wish to put such unity at risk and undermine this Administration in very public ways.   I do not believe that such behaviour is acceptable and I hope the majority of Group would agree.  The time to deal with any dissatisfaction of the Leadership of the Council or the Group is at the AGM each year. Our first priority for 2010 has to be to secure the election of Justin and Robert as our new MPs.  The second goal is to maintain, or even increase the number of Conservative councillors in Swindon as there are a number of vulnerable Labour seats up for election. In the meantime, I will carry on working with my Cabinet and Group colleagues to build on our success to date.

 

Yours sincerely,



Cllr Roderick Bluh
Leader of Swindon Borough Council [/b]



Well, Rod certainly got what he wanted in the general election but not so much in the locals.

What should his 2012 message say?





Offline Mart

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2012, 04:58:58 PM »
Cheerio.
Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.

Offline Richard Symonds

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2012, 08:37:48 PM »
Cheerio.

That is a forlorn hope.

As for the letter it will be much the same as the 2009 one, which I am tempted to take apart!!  :santa_undecided:

Rod is incapable of admitting mistakes which is why we want to see the back of him. 

Does this remind you of anyone in a historical context?

As for his legacy, it will be one where no one will be able to recover from it for years
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Offline Richard Symonds

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2012, 08:51:15 PM »
Quote from: Roderick Bluh, leader of Swindon Borough Council[b

7. Recycling has proved to be hugely successful with mixed plastics now added.  Our rate of 48% compares with national average of 37%.  Fionuala is tirelessly working with Officers to improve recycling, waste and Streetsmart services.

Cllr Roderick Bluh
Leader of Swindon Borough Council [/b]

Couldn't help but reflect on this statement when yesterday I witnessed the 'Recycling Team' drop three pieces of cardboard in the street outside 15, Highclere Avenue which as you know is in Finuola's own ward!! 

And one member of the SCS team was keeping nice and warm in the cab and he wasn't the driver!!

Don't you think they should have picked it up?

and

Are SCS a cost effective choice for our waste disposal?
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Offline Tea Boy

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2012, 09:06:08 PM »
Quote
10. In areas of Leisure, Connecting People Connecting Places and Enforcement my other Cabinet colleagues are working on the transformational agenda.
Well, Rod certainly got what he wanted in the general election but not so much in the locals.

What should his 2012 message say?

Would the last redundant 'transformed' person from the last shut down 'transformed' department to leave SBC please turn off the lights?
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Offline Mart

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2012, 07:51:44 AM »
Does this remind you of anyone in a historical context?

Finger hovering over a linky, suspect yours is too.
Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.

Offline jennyb

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2012, 09:52:33 AM »
Would I be right is assuming that this 2009 letter was not meant to be in the public domain?


Can't imagine it sounded any less daft in 2009 than it does today...
It takes wisdom to know what you know and wisdom to know what you don't know and when to call in those who do. Often the people who do know will advise that evidence and research are very helpful when making decisions. Who knows it might even save a bit of money.

Offline Richard Symonds

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2012, 10:40:44 AM »
Would I be right is assuming that this 2009 letter was not meant to be in the public domain?

As we have not had any since Jenny I suspect not!!   :santa_rolleyes:
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Offline Muggins

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2012, 02:07:42 PM »
To me this is not a letter from the 'Leader of the council' but just from the leader of his own party to his party, or the quote below would never have been allowed!  My goodness an admission that all is NOT well.

Quote: Sadly there are some in our group who for their own entirely personal reasons wish to put such unity at risk and undermine this Administration in very public ways.   I do not believe that such behaviour is acceptable and I hope the majority of Group would agree.  The time to deal with any dissatisfaction of the Leadership of the Council or the Group is at the AGM each year. Our first priority for 2010 has to be to secure the election of Justin and Robert as our new MPs.  The second goal is to maintain, or even increase the number of Conservative councillors in Swindon as there are a number of vulnerable Labour seats up for election. In the meantime, I will carry on working with my Cabinet and Group colleagues to build on our success to date.


2009 - transformational - Connecting Places, Connecting People. trasnsformed itself right out of existence.
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Offline Des Morgan

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2012, 06:14:59 PM »
Quote
Fionuala is tirelessly working with Officers to improve recycling, waste and Streetsmart services

I haven't seen her in her designer dungarees running after a dust cart!!!

Offline Des Morgan

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2012, 06:17:40 PM »
Quote
I believe our record of achievement in 2009 will be proven to be our best yet:


I am sure he will write the same self serving drivel for 2012 - and by the way is this true?

Quote
6. By the time midnight falls on New Years Eve, SCS will be a stand-alone commercial company owned by the Council.  The business plan shows that the outcomes over the coming years will produce strong revenues to be returned to the council to support our budgets.    This is a superb example of how this Administration is changing failure into success.   Everyone has worked tirelessly to make this happen.

Would that be the same type of business plan against which Coun Bluh maintained his beloved Wi-Fi project would produce strong revenues to be returned to the Council. I sometimes wonder about his capacity for hyperbole then remember 'he is a politician'

Offline Richard Symonds

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #11 on: December 16, 2012, 10:49:29 AM »
Revenues and Outcomes for Swindon Borough Council and a Big Big Deficit

What will they do about it?

What an interesting prospect for the New Year -

A Conservative Run Council in 'special measures'

Could it happen?
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Offline Mart

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Re: The Leaders Christmas Message 2012 - What Could He Say?
« Reply #12 on: December 16, 2012, 04:48:26 PM »
I think this is special enough thank you.
Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.