Cllr Johnson calls for Mayoral car to be scrapped

Brockley Councillor Darren Johnson has issued a call for Mayor Bullock to give up his chauffeur-driven car at a time when the Council is introducing austerity measures in so many areas of its spending.


A release from the Green Party says:

In response to a formal question from Cllr Johnson at last week's full council meeting, the Cabinet Member for Resources confirmed they are considering giving up one of two civic cars currently in use.

However, Cllr Johnson urged the council go further and look at whether they need a mayoral car at all. Cllr Johnson commented:

"The Mayor of London and London Assembly have managed quite happily without their own chauffeur-driven car for the past decade. I would question whether it's something Lewisham Council should be spending any money on at all, at a time of such harsh cuts to local services."

BC isn't a big fan of gesture politics, but in this case, Cllr Johnson is surely right. There is no efficiency argument for keeping a Mayoral car and the Mayor of Lewisham does not need to project power or status.

34 comments:

Anonymous said...

Can't it be both sensible and gesture politics at the same time?

Brockley Nick said...

Yes, it can - sorry, I thought that's what I said.

Tamsin said...

Although it's also the chauffeur - who is a really nice and helpful chap. I very much hope he can be redeployed somewhere.

But certainly save on on-goign diesel, make a visible gesture and flog the cars themselves for their capital value.

Lou Baker said...

Brockley Central declares war on white van men and chauffeurs.

Both ends of the motoring spectrum in one day.

Pizza delivery riders - beware.

westsider said...

Yes Tamsin scrapping the service doesn't have to mean firing the chauffeur. That person could be redeployed. Perhaps on parking enforcement duties.

Anonymous said...

you can only be redeployed into a job that exists - not a reliable option in the council at the moment

Anonymous said...

Maybe they could give him one of those white vans,would be one less.

Anonymous said...

Yup - the cut of the car means the loss of a livelihood - the chauffeur. Perhaps we ought to be looking at whether all these cuts are working at all

welcome to 2011 said...

In my company, if someone's role gets chopped, it doesn't mean they lose their job, it means we find them a new one (if they're good and they want to stay). I know they're cutting jobs, but there are always internal vacancies and why couldn't this person be considered for them.

We can't just have job creation schemes, the roles need to be useful.

Autopesulad said...

"Maybe they could give him one of those white vans,would be one less." good one!

Tamsin said...

Difficult isn't it - like my saying that Ward Assemblies are an unecessary luxury in these times (the localities fund was adequately divvied up before by just the ward councillors working the networks) but then that puts jobs at risk for Nancy, Sarah and Sam.

Anonymous said...

I agree, give the car up and fire the driver!!

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

If he is not being driven round how will he see all the white vans cluttering up Brockley Cross?

THNick said...

Whilst Mayor, Ken may not have had a car but he took a lot of taxis. There may be an efficiency argument here, will be interesting to see what the council come back with. If it's just for the ego, then it should have gone years ago.

Oh and "welcome to 2011", it's not "your company" that looks to redeploy people, it's "every company that isn't breaking the law"

Anonymous said...

do the council need a ceo?

Anonymous said...

Do you think that an organisation that handles hundreds of millions of pounds needs a professional who knows how to administer the beast? The mayor and cllrs are politicians, there is an argument tha they may not be the best peo,e to sort the nitty gritty involved in running a complex organisation. I can see an argument for them.

Anonymous said...

make him go on the bus like anyone else...or cycle and find somewhere to lock it up if he can...

Furious Gerald said...

Maybe the mayor could be given a free london-wide travel card like GLA members

Organic Asparagus said...

We'll end up with shit people running the public sector if we make them all "get the bus". Sone might say we're already there.

Lou Baker said...

We'd end up with better public transport if people in power had to use it.

I think the cycling idea is a great one.

Most council business is done out of peak hours. The mayor should cycle and, where necessary, take his bike on the train.

Great example to all.

Incidentally, if you have kids at secondary school and you drive them there - you are a menace. Get the kids a bike and let them get on with it. School run parents are a big part of what's wrong with society.

Headhunter said...

Yes, under law, companies are not allowed to lay people off against their will and at teh same time be hiring in another area, they have to make sure that those being laid off access to vacancies on offer. Employers are obliged to make an attempt to redeploy people internally.

Lady GaGa said...

You're all missing the obvious here - why not scrap the Mayor not just his car? At 93K a year that would be a saving worth making. What does he actually do that can't be done by the Chief Executive etc etc.? Other Councils function without a Mayor so why does Lewisham need one? He should make the ultimate grand cost cutting gesture and dissolve his post. Or do it voluntarily for the love of the job, status, pointless ceremony stuff, gold chain......

Anonymous said...

We vote in the mayor, a CEO is a technocrat. Why not replace the PM with a project manager.

Lady GaGa said...

PM = Project Manager in many companies. And Lady GaGa didn't vote in/for the Mayor. If there wasn't a person standing for the post,if it was abolished, there would be no one to vote for. The post of Mayor isn't vital to the successful running of any Council.

Lou Baker said...

An elected mayor is a good thing. The alternative is to rely solely on councillors who - with the best will in the world - are hardly the best and brightest.

Many get 'elected' with just a few hundred votes and have no discernible leadership skills. Or any skills for that matter.

I've met Bullock a few times. He's a decent bloke who cares passionately and he understands how local government works. I disagree with many of his policies - but that's because this area is lefty central. If we had fewer dumb voters in Lewisham we'd have a mayor with better policies.

Anonymous said...

Mayor bullock is a Labour man, you can't simultaneously criticise voters for their choices and claim they made a good choice. Also not all councillors are hopeless, you have a very jaundiced view of the area you call home. Your language is a bit 1980's gormless - trendy lefty is as useful a classification as a bowler hatted city gent or evil banker. Useful for the mail reading classes I suppose, keeps things simple.

You're confused, go lie down somewhere.

Tamsin said...

@ Lou I wouldn't suggest nowadays that secondary school children cycle to school - the roads just too dangerous - but we did choose schools on bus routes.

Lou Baker said...

@tamsin

The roads are 'too dangerous' because there are too many school run mums (and they nearly always are mums) barging in. Ban them and put the kids on a bike.

@anon 2241.

I said Bullock's a decent enough man. He's just wrong on all the issues. I understand that's because his voters are wrong but he's wrong all the same.

I understand not all ultra lefties are bad people. They're a bit thick perhaps and may need a cuddle. But that doesn't make them bad - just seriously misguided. Same with the righty-nuts too.

I agree not all councillors are hopeless. Most are. But not all. You occasionally get a decent one.

Tamsin said...

Ban them and put the kids on a bus or Shanks pony. Might be done by having disabled only parking in the vicinity of schools and circulating traffic wardens. The trouble is that even that wont deter the secondary school parents where the children can be booted out in three seconds flat.

Anonymous said...

Really need to understand your left-right scale. Bullock is no way near 'ultra left'.

Your arguments as usual collapse under the weight of your shouty rhetoric.

Basically there's you, who are a self proclaimed expert in most fields, and the great mass who are clearly stupid. If you don't understand their argument - stupid, don't understand their job - a beaurocrat, unemployed - obviously lazy, poor - brought it on themselves. What DO you do for a living? some vital function no doubt.

Some councelors are good, some are bad. Genius, thanks.....your point being?

Brockley Nick said...

I believe that in the past, Lou has mentioned that he is a journalist. And therefore, a hard-working and respected member of the community.

Anonymous said...

Oh, great. I look forward to the next issue of OK! and the story of the skateboarding duck.

urbansurgery said...

i have more time for those who post with discernable and consistent names no matter what flavour their expressed opinion. sniping behind an "anonymous said… " about anyone's views is a little pointless.

Anonymous said...

Lou is a he, I thought it was short for Louise...

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