Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Then The Second Wheel Blew Out

Hot on the heels, to use a tabloid phrase, of Anderson's departure from the Culture Board, the head of events for 2008, Lee Forde handed in his notice (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/merseyside/6749217.stm ).
Almost a week after Forde's resignation both he & the Culture Company remain tight-lipped about it. Well, almost tight-lipped. According to the BBC report, "The Culture Company has issued a statement confirming his resignation, saying it would like to thank him and wish him well for the future."
That's the sort of thing which would have fitted in to a Politbureau missive when the Berlin Wall still stood. Nowadays it's the default bollockese which emanates from many a boardroom when the PR machine hasn't got going.
The financial cost of 2008 is only now coming under the spotlight. Joe Anderson referred to it as he bade the Culture Company a less than fond farewell. The sobering reality, in stark contrast to that intoxicating morning in 2003, is that there is a £22m shortfall in Liverpool City Council's fund for 2008. One contentious option for the council, first discussed at a council meeting last Wednesday, is that the city raise the £22m by borrowing the sum over five years. However, this option will not be available if the government doesn't agree to a change in rules to allow this funding plan.
Both Joe Anderson & present council leader, Warren Bradley hope to meet Gordon Brown & pitch their case. From what I've heard, however, Brown is in no hurry to approve the plan, even though it involves no new treasury cash. His thinking is that since the Lib-Dems have been held power in Liverpool for the last decade or so, they should take the hit in any political fall-out over the 2008 shambles.

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