Calls on red tape to be curbed

RED tape is costing council tax payers in Suffolk millions of pounds, the leader of the opposition at County Hall said today.Conservative group leader Jeremy Pembroke said administration costs had spiralled out of control and a special effort needed to be mounted to keep the lid on bureaucracy.

RED tape is costing council tax payers in Suffolk millions of pounds, the leader of the opposition at County Hall said today.

Conservative group leader Jeremy Pembroke said administration costs had spiralled out of control and a special effort needed to be mounted to keep the lid on bureaucracy.

"The council needs to look at every aspect of its costs and try to cut them – there are clearly ways of operating much more efficiently.

"For instance the county council spends £17 million a year on maintaining and improving roads and footpaths.

"But it spends another £4 million a year organising that maintenance. What's the point of that?

"It surely cannot be necessary to spend 23 per cent of the total £21 million budget for roads on administration – that's the kind of thing we need to look at."

Most Read

Mr Pembroke believes the entire county hall bureaucracy needs to be examined.

"There are massive savings that can be made there – and I would like to see the savings passed on to pensioners.

"We should look at whether these can be ring-fenced and given to pensioner council tax payers as a rebate, it wouldn't mean their being subsidised by other people," he said.

Council leader Bryony Rudkin denied there was excessive spending on bureaucracy at county hall.

"Under the terms of best value legislation we have to look at everything to ensure we are as efficient as possible.

"I hadn't heard these figures at all, and if the Conservatives think there may be efficiency savings we would be delighted to hear their ideas," she said.

"It's in no one's interest to run services inefficiently, but when people look from the outside and say 'we can cut this or that' they often find it more difficult in practice."

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter