COPELAND Council yesterday defended itself over spending nearly £2,000 on a recent staff team-building away day. It included problem-solving and outdoor activities such as canoeing and orienteering.
One independent councillor claimed “it was a jolly” but council chief executive Paul Walker said: “I think £60 a head is not extravagant for this quality of training.”
Deputy Tory leader Alistair Norwood claimed the £1,980 spend was a waste of money. “It is disgraceful and can’t be justified at a time when we are cutting services and forcing people out through compulsory redundancy. What kind of message does it send out to other staff who are losing their jobs and to the electorate generally?”
But independent councillor, Brian Dixon (Distington) asked: “When people are losing their jobs in the council, why have we spent money on a jolly like this?”
Mr Dixon, a former GMB union leader, also hit out at what he calls excessive payments made by the council to consultants and is calling for an inquiry. “My understanding is that £90,000 has been paid to consultants over a period of three months recently."
My comment: Consultants appear to be taking over the asylum.
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