Britain's 205 councils have created a total of 4,148 new posts in the year since last May. That means that each council has created an average of 20 new positions. Many of them are of a sort whose utility is hard to demonstrate at any time: with nurseries, libraries and other services that are actually used by local people being closed, they appear outlandishly extravagant.
Most people are only too well aware that, far from being "vital", much of what local government does is not worth doing. And it is not only in refraining from creating posts such as wood-fuel development officers that local authorities could reduce their expenditure. Town hall chiefs, and their armies of executives, assistants and flunkeys, could also cut their own excessive pay.
My favourite comment from readers of the Telegraph article came from Matt Smith: The coalition approached controlling the councils in the wrong way. It was evident that legislation is urgently needed to control councils and redetermine how exactly they spend taxpayers' money, but Pickles just used the blunt instrument of cuts in an attempt to force them to get rid of non-jobs. So these cynical organisations are now cutting services such as road repairs, litter, sports centres and libraries, while the vast majority of the best paid bureaucrats are keeping their ridiculous jobs.
My comment: Couldn't have put it better myself.
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