Once again I feel moved to respond to yet another example of West Sussex County Council’s spending running out of control.
Published figures indicate WSCC has spent an average of £10m on ‘consultants’ over each of the past five years.
In a single year, assuming about 50 weeks of working, this breaks down to around £200,000 per week.
I find it incredible Cllr Brown claims this degree of spending is ‘not excessive’.
His allusions to highway engineers, architects and IT contractors appear to be a poor justification for the situation.
£200,000 should employ an ‘expert’ in each of these disciplines for an entire year, and they would be handsomely rewarded on a salary of more than £60,000; in line with, or above, that of the majority of local professional people.
Consultants are a necessary evil, but surely their services should only be required for abstruse and complex problem solving.
Spending of this magnitude suggests abstruse and complex problem-solving must be the daily stuff of the council’s work.
Can this really be the case? If not, there is another problem which suggests itself: why are council leaders paid so much if they are not able to make every-day decisions on our behalf without having their hands held by the appropriate consultant?
One is left wondering what, exactly, are we paying them for?