Haringey Council admits “out of control” spending

A recent Guardian report has highlighted how Haringey Council has admitted that action to cut wasteful spending could have been taken years ago. Local taxpayers, faced with the closure of older people’s day centres and cuts to children’s centres, youth services and parks, will be outraged to learn that these cuts could been avoided, Liberal Democrat have said.  
The article revealed that the Council was spending £12million a year more than necessary on goods and services like printing, IT, consultants and bottled water.  Opposition councillors say these are yet more examples of Labour’s “out of control” spending.
The Council had 14 different bottled water suppliers, spent £5million more than needed on printing, used 60 different consultants and thousands of temp workers. In total, savings of £12million were made on procuring goods and services at cheaper prices. 
Liberal Democrats, who have been arguing that Council has been wasting millions due to poor management and procurement for years, have said this is an admission of failure by the Council and have called for further scrutiny of the Council’s finances.
Cllr Richard Wilson, Haringey Liberal Democrat Leader, comments:
“If Labour had listened to outside criticism this waste could have been identified earlier and millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money could have been saved.
“Hard-pressed local taxpayers will be outraged to hear that, instead of closing older people day centres cutting funding for parks and youth services, Labour could have been sticking to their promises to protect front-line services. But this is another example of their out-of-control spending.
“Whilst belatedly the Council have acted to reduce costs they should see this as a wake up call and start embracing scrutiny. We need a beefed up watchdog body which can get its teeth into the Council’s finances and ensure local people get value for money.”
Lynne Featherstone MP adds:
“It is widely known that Labour nationally overspent and contributed to the financial troubles the country is now in. The Council has now admitted that they too failed to act to reduce costs that could and should have protected front-line services.
“It is unfair that the most vulnerable residents are losing vital services because of Labour’s inability to keep Council spending under control”.