Tag Archives: Steve Pearce

CAPITULATING COUNCILLOR WATCH

The Man of Steel: not to be pissed off?

The planning committee meeting last month where the proposed Chocolate Factory development in Greenbank with SOD ALL affordable housing was considered (again) provided excellent opportunities for ridiculous GRANDSTANDING from useless councillors prior to their complete capitulation.

Wallflower Labour councillor Steve “MAN OF STEEL” Pearce was among them. In January this tedious old fart announced on his blog, “I love sitting on Licensing committee” (sic).

The same blog also demanded that book deliveries to Bristol libraries “should be made via the Freight Consolidation Centre so that we can reduce the number of vehicle movements around the city”. So no surprise when he voted in February’s budget meeting to, er, CLOSE the freight consolidation centre!

So cometh the crucial planning meeting, cometh the man and the big fella didn’t fail to disappoint. Announcing to the audience that greedy developers ignoring affordable housing obligations “are starting to PISS ME OFF, and that you don’t want to piss me off”.

Really? Why not? Who on earth would be bothered about pissing off this FATUOUS LITTLE PRICK?

Naturally his committee went on to vote IN FAVOUR of the development!

ARENA: BREAKING THE BANK?

IS THERE A BLACK HOLE IN THE WHITE ELEPHANT?

Bristol Arena - white elephant - Dru Marland

The budget for mayor “Uncle” George Ferguson’s major VANITY PROJECT and RE-ELECTION STRATEGY is spiralling dangerously out of control.

Despite efforts from the mayor to GAG councillors from revealing the financial shambles, we know that CANCELLATION of any on-site car parking and the LOSS of revenue has smashed a £10m-sized budget black hole into mayor’s £90m Arena project.

Meanwhile a council Scrutiny Committee in August UNCOVERED a further £4m worth of costs for the project, pushing the total budget up to at least £94m.

Now it’s been revealed that the owners of the land, the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), are DEMANDING payment for their land, which the council had originally claimed would be a freebie. The HCA are believed to want around £4m for the land.

So just a year into the project and costs have been already pushed up by around NINE PER CENT to £98m before a shovel’s got anywhere near the site. The total FUNDING GAP for the project is now at least £18m and this will have to be met by council taxpayers and through cuts to services already being hammered by austerity.

Concerns have also been expressed about other aspects of Uncle George’s funding proposals. He claims £53m will come from the City Deal ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT FUND.

A complicated mechanism based on borrowing against any increased receipts from business rates in the TEMPLE QUARTER ENTERPRISE ZONE. At present there’s little sign of much growth in these receipts, which leaves Bristol council taxpayers, as lenders of the last resort, to pick up that tab too.

Uncle George claims a further £38m of funding will come from rental and operating income from the arena. Although this figure has been described to us as “VERY AMBITIOUS” and, again, any shortfall will have to be met by the council taxpayer.

Uncle George, however, remains wedded to his basketcase project, which was one of the few actual promises he made in his election campaign. Delivering an arena, regardless of cost, may also be the only chance this highly unpopular mayor has of getting RE-ELECTED.

So worried is Uncle George about these PRECARIOUS FINANCES being revealed, he got his useless new legal boss SANJAY “UNDER” PRASHAR to invent a so-called ‘BLANKET EXEMPT STATUS’ gag to stop anyone discussing them.

Uncle George now has also removed the responsibility for the arena from the council’s PLACE SCRUTINY COMMISSION who had been asking some tricky questions and given it to the friendlier OVERVIEW AND SCRUTINY COMMISSION.

The commission’s Labour Chair, STEVE PEARCE, has already been quoted as saying “I won’t be pushing the mayor too hard on this.”

Thanks Steve. Nice to know you’re looking after us so well.