Posted by: westlancashirerecord | November 4, 2016

A Story Of Meetings, Bloody Meetings!

People of a certain age will remember seeing “Meetings, Bloody Meetings”bored, a 1976 British comedy training film that starred John Cleese as a bumbling middle manager. He also starred in the Ministry of Silly Walks, and who can forget the T-shirts john-cleese-monty-python-silly-walk-t-shirt-design?

Anyway, the WLBC Chief Executive’s “Update” to staff emphasises what a lot of money we pay for an officer to attend meetings. Her job isn’t just that, of course, but isn’t delegation important too? And what do all these meetings achieve?

So be prepared to be bored as she writes “The last few weeks have seen an emphasis on partnership working, civic events and budget matters.

“On Monday 17 October I attended the Local Authority Chief Executives meeting with a focus on the Lancashire Executive thematic leads. This was followed by a Shadow Combined Authority meeting which was well attended, and received an update on discussions with the Government in connection with Lancashire’s aspiration to have a Combined Authority in place by 1 April 2017, amongst other matters.

“On Wednesday 19 October I joined the Mayor, Consort and the Leader at the official opening of the Technology Hub at Edge Hill University. This impressive facility houses cutting edge technology and was part-funded by the Lancashire Local Enterprise Partnership. The facility is designed to support computer science and new biotechnology programmes at the University which will commence in 2017, and the Food Science Degree which will commence in 2018. [Any chance it can design efficient site  car parking?]

“Also on Wednesday 19 October the Council held a special meeting to confer Alderman status on former Councillor, Mrs Una Atherley. It was lovely to see so many existing Aldermen and former Councillors attending to pay tribute to Una on this special evening. My thanks go to Jacky Denning, Assistant Member Services Manager and her team, and to Jill Ryan, Member Services Civic Support Officer and Cathryn Jackson, Principal Overview and Scrutiny Officer in particular for their efforts in making this a successful event. [There are some real oldies now in the WLBC, how many more aldermen will there be in the equivalent but unpaid “Upper House”?]

“Full Council met on the rise of Alderman Council, and discussed a number of significant matters including policy options for the General Revenue Account and Housing Revenue Account for 2017/18, the 2018 Boundary Review (Parliamentary Constituencies) proposals, proposals in relation to the Westec House site, and interim arrangements in advance of recruitment to the two Director vacancies. In relation to policy options, a number of options were agreed which will contribute to meeting the anticipated budget gap in 2017/18 and further consideration will be given to closing the remaining gap in the run up to, and at, the Council meeting on 22 February 2017. [Green bins are now being flogged on ebaydelboybin [click to enlarge]

“On Friday 21 October I accompanied the Economic Regeneration Champion to the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority meeting, and items discussed included the allocation of growth fund monies and the area based review of further education, which is currently ongoing.

“On Monday 24 October, with Dave Tilleray, Director of Leisure and Wellbeing taking the helm whilst I was on leave, he went to the Health and Wellbeing Board at County Hall, to discuss a number of health and social care integration initiatives, together with plans for a new Pan Lancashire Health and Wellbeing Board. [Any plans to visit the Beacon Park Golf Course shambles soon? 013]

“We were saddened on 25 October to receive the news that Past Chairman and Councillor, Eric Kells, had passed away. Our condolences go to his family and friends.

“On Wednesday 26 October, Dave represented the Council at the Local Resilience Forum Executive Group. This is the strategic emergency planning group for Lancashire, involving the statutory authorities, environment agency, central government, the military and others, and a series of new emergency plans were agreed for a range of issues, together with confirmation of new arrangements to deal with some increasingly familiar events such as flooding.

“On Friday 28 October, Dave met with the Portfolio Holder for Health and Community Safety and a representative from the Alzheimer’s Society to agree how proposals for a Dementia Action Alliance can be taken forward in West Lancashire.

“On Wednesday 2 November, I attended the third meeting of the Chief Officers Committee, as we progress towards the final stages of selection and recruitment to the posts of Director of Housing and Inclusion and Director of Street Scene.

“On Thursday 3 November, I held my regular Election Planning meeting with Terry Broderick, Borough Solicitor, Tom Lynan, Electoral and Administration Services Manager, and Susanne Malmgren, Senior Electoral and Administration Officer.

“Finally, on Friday 4 November, together with Martin Kelly, Director of Economic Development at LCC, I attended a briefing for the lead Councillors in relation to the Lancashire Combined Authority ‘Prosperous’ theme, the Leader of the County Council and the Leader of Rossendale Borough Council”. [Prosperous, now there’s a thought]

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