Friday, May 30, 2008


Class sizes to reduce in P1, 2 and 3 to 18 said the SNP and they put aside £40 m. to do it. Now we know the cost is £360 m. a £320 m. shortfall, let's not beat about the bush here that figure means the SNP are either liars or they are seriously incompetent either way the promise is 'Scotch Mist.'

Meanwhile here in sunny Renfrewshire the Education Board heard the following betrayal at it's meeting, P1 will be 25, P2 - 30 reducing to 25 in August and P3 - 30.

When you consider that the SNP are cutting £4.5 m. from education, and teachers are leaving in droves as well as children sitting highers not being given the subjects of their choice, you can only conclude that the people of Renfrewshire are being betrayed by the SNP particularly the children.

This is what happens when people with no political anchor get their hands on power, they believe in nothing they stand for nothing and nothing is sacred to them even our children's futures.

Their flagship policy of a local income tax is also looking like toast as well, law experts are lining up to tell them what Labour has been saying is correct, that it will not work and it is more than likely against EU rules and will be the subject of legal proceedings.

The SNP say it will bring in £1.6 billion and the Council Tax at the moment brings in £2.5 billion that's £900 m. short in the school I went to.

Is it more incompetence or more lies ? you decide.

For years we have sat in Renfrewshire Council listening to the SNP damning PPP, every meeting saw more censure and condemnation it became their favourite hatred and, believe me, they have many.

They even went so far as to say that the new Council Headquarters would never happen because the PPP scheme would collapse. Salmond (the spiv) of course opened it with great joy, no mention of PPP that day, just a plaque saying 'First Minister Salmond MSP opened this place. No mention either of his other job as an MP - (the spiv) eh !

Now we have their replacement for PPP and they are forced to admit that it is no different to PPP, more incompetence or lies ? did they really not know that they would be found out ?

They probably did know but the prospect of power as it got closer pushed aside any pretence at truth or decency. To grab that power they were and still are willing to say and do anything, no scam too nasty, no lie too big, no principle that can't be dumped.

This is the SNP today, in power lead by a con man and dragging Scotland into the mire with them.


Anonymous said...

The grant settlement for Renfrewshire reflects the decline in population across the Council area. This year Renfrewshire’s grant settlement was increased by 3.4% from our 2007-2008 allocation. The Scottish average increase was 4.55%. Consequently Renfrewshire faced a funding gap of £8.6m when setting the overall Council budget and Council departments were required to identify targeted efficiency savings to meet this shortfall.
Included within the Education and Leisure Services Budget (ELS) budget is an uplift for the teachers pay award from 1 April 2008 of 2.5%. Also included is provision for the reduction of class sizes at the P2 stage to a maximum of 25 pupils.

The Education budget has increased from £150m in 2007-2008 to £157m in 2008-2009 and a major capital investment programme continues to be progressed to improve the condition of school buildings.

Allan said...

£4.5 million, why thats almost an annual payment on New Labours re-mortgaging of Renfrewshires schools....

Anonymous said...

Alas, Councillor, your maths is on a level with your English!

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Anonymous) 30/05/08

The SNP lied about reducing class sizes, The new tax system and their promise to replace PPP - Three flagship policies which turned out to be lies.
There are more to come.

Police numbers are down rather than up by 1000 as promised, do you not feel like a dupe ?

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Allan) 30/05/08

A system which the SNP have now been forced to admit they will also operate.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(David Duff) 31/05/08

Well spotted, the SNP shortfall is then only £320 million so that’s OK then right ?

Anonymous said...

The education budget for schools has been cut. No ifs no buts.

Experienced teachers are being asked to retire early to make way for Newly Qualified Teachers whose salary is paid by the Scottish government. These teachers will not be retained but will be replaced annually by next years batch of NQTs.

Educational Advisers are not being replaced, departmental budgets are being slashed and frozen for the next 4 years and depute heads are being told to teach classes when they should be running the school.

If anyone says that this is an improvement or an increase in real terms spending then they need their head looked at.

Anonymous said...

If you got something so simple wrong, then what else? It seems to me, and many others here at the Uni, that you are the problem with Labour in that you refuse any real and rational debate.

When did you last debate openly without resorting to abuse or walking out? You know what we mean.

Anonymous said...

"Teachers leaving in droves..."

Are they? Can you provide some evidence to back up this sweeping statement? I haven't heard about a fall in teacher numbers anywhere else.

In any case, cutting class numbers is a pointless and stupid goal. There's no evidence to suggest that reducing the net number of students in a class necessarily improves the education of an individual child within that class.

Anonymous said...

"so that’s OK then right ?"

My dear chap, a semi-Sassenach like me wouldn't dream of commenting on Jock finances. I could end up like the man who dropped a pound coin in the Scottish parliament - although I hear he's made a remarkable recovery.

Nick said...

Tee hee, a Labour councillor aghast at poor accounting? Shurely shome mishtake?

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Oakwood) 01/06/08

It’s a huge betrayal by the SNP in Holyrood and in Renfrewshire.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Youth) 01/06/08

It’s rather revealing that you concentrate on my mistake and not on the SNP lies over the massive educational shortfall on class sizes.

I debate all the time in the council chamber, at board meetings and at full council meetings.

I don’t resort to abuse or walk outs, if someone writes to me in an abusive way then I reserve the right to hit back.

There’s no real substance to anything you have said.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Anonymous) 01/06/08

Read the comment from ‘Oakwood’ or talk to the EIS or try contacting Johnstone High for starters.

On class sizes you are missing the point, (deliberately?) this is not about whether small class sizes are better it’s about the SNP lies and broken promises. They obviously think small is better or they wouldn’t have promised reductions would they ? It was an election bribe which like others has turned out be a lie.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(David Duff) 01/06/08

Is it only ‘Jock finances’ which you don’t comment on ? I’m sure you’ve commented on ‘Jock issues’ before, or am I wrong ? I can’t be bothered checking but I might if need be.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Nick) 10:26

Completely wrong, anyone can make accounting mistakes, what we are dealing with is systematic SNP lies as election bribes.

Nick said...

Mistakes a bit like the one that's seen the government's costing for the 2012 Olympics rise from £2.375bn to £9.325bn? That's £7bn more than was represented in their initial budget!

In case we want to write this off with a shrug and a 'These things happen...', this increase led the Public Accounts Committee to say the "additional costs [were] entirely forseeable" and to ask whether this was due to "Bad faith or incompetence". Ouch.

Would you say that was a genuine gaffe or total misrepresentation of costs to the people who'll be paying for it?

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Nick) 12:04

I think this is a disingenuous and rather obvious attempt to get the SNP off the hook. Comparing the greatest sporting event in the history of the planet (as the Olympics always are) with lowering class sizes in P1, P2 and P3 in a Country the size of Scotland is risible.

The costs of the Olympics are running at an overspend of approx. 4 x their original estimate.

To compare them with the overspend of the SNP on the rather smaller project of class sizes would require an overspend of approx. 11.5 x their original estimate, which is what the SNP have done.

Conclusion - Costing a project the size of the Olympics 6 years in advance is rather more inexact than primary class sizes. The SNP lied.

Nick said...

I disagree. According to the PAC, costing something like the Olympics isn't an inexact science. In fact, some analysts have confidently predicted that, all told, 2012 will cost closer to £20bn - that's 10 times the original budget allowed for. Oops...

The SNP need £360m in total? That's nine times what their budget originally allowed for. Also a definite cock-up!

I'm not trying to get the SNP off the hook; they can go swing for all I care. But here's my point: I'm curious as to what you'd call Labour's accounting deficiencies if those of opposing parties are 'lies'?

Anonymous said...


Off topic but I would like your opinion.

At a recent visit to Renfrewshire Council, I was surprised to learn that all councillors receive unlimited free soft refreshments at the council. Apparently this was introduced by the previous Labour administration.

Why is this and surely this should be treated as a taxable benefit in kind.

Also, it's not exactly the healthiest initiative ever.

What next? Free pies and Lard?

Whoa there big boy!

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Alan) 16:44
This was the case when I joined 9 yrs. Ago I don’t know how it started.

Cllrs. get many so called perks to assist them to do their jobs and there’s an interesting question about this.

The new councillors lounge in the other chamber - free lunch on day of full council - ’blackberry’ mobiles - lap top computers - mobile tape recorders - free reserved parking - pens, pencils diaries.

There might be other things which escape me at the moment but.
Q/ What do all these things have in common ?

Answer/ - They were all condemned as toys for the boys and a rip off for the tax payer by the SNP at various times

Q/ who now uses them all and everything else they can get ?

Answer - why the SNP of course, it rather puts soft drinks into perspective doesn’t it.
Keep it coming Alan.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Nick) 16:42
I disagree, if costing the Olympics is ‘not an inexact science why is it described as costing closer to £20 B. why no exact figure !

I maintain that predicting a multi billion pound project 6 yrs. In advance is an inexact science, even if I’m not an economist. Would these experts predict the huge rise in security costs e.g. as a result of the terrorist attacks on London the day after the Olympic bid was won ?

The fact is that the SNP lied during the election and are now being found out.

Anonymous said...

For anyone who does not believe that the level of education funding is going down instead of up should read this

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Anonymous) 17:12

She took the deliberate decision to escalate the war when it was not necessary, she made sure it would happen, she wanted it to happen, her career depended on it.

As I said, unlike people like you I am prepared to tell the truth, she caused unnecessary deaths and injuries, forget ’my country right or wrong’ this wasn’t patriotism it was cynical warmongering, an evil, evil woman.

Anonymous said...


All of the other items that you have mentioned can be construed as items that are a requirement of workers who are travelling around and on the go (with perhaps the exception of the parking although many other companies have private reserved parking within their office premises).

Don't all councillors have the use of these items and not just the SNP?

This was not a political snipe at any party. I merely mentioned the Labour administration as they were the people who introduced free Coke, Fanta, Sprite etc.

My point is that regardless of who is getting these benefits, do you think that unlimited free soft drinks should be provided for councillors (meaning all parties).

I am not a Gnat so please don't try to turn this into a political snipe at your opposition. You embarrass yourself

Nick said...

Ok, here's a more exact costing worked out by economists and accountants at Burning Our Money:

* ODA Olympic Park budget (March 2007)- £9.3bn
* Other sports venues (HoC Library bid summary)- £0.6bn
* Games running costs (HoC Library bid summary)- £1.5bn
* Broadcast/media facilities (HoC Library bid summary)- £0.1bn
* Associated transport infrastructure (HoC Library bid summary)- £7.2bn

Totting up those items gives a total of £18.7bn.

That, you must admit, is a lot more than the £2.375bn put out by Labour in their publicity.

Even if the budget were now to stay static at the £9.325bn currently given, that's a huge overspend, with far higher ramifications for London's finances than the disparity between the SNP's figures and the actual cost has for Scotland's.

The PAC condemned the government in language similar to the language you used to condemn the SNP. Perhaps both the SNP and Labour lied about their budgetary forecasts in order to curry favour? Or are both incompetent?

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Oakwood) 03/06/08

It’s not only me then.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Alan) 07:50

I’ve never given it much thought but my answer is no they shouldn’t.

Should people at meetings be provided with ‘Old Peckham Spring’ water or tea / coffee etc. do you accept these things ?

Is there a serious point to this ?

You gave me the opportunity to highlight another example of SNP duplicity and I took it, they are liars and spivs.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Nick) 08:55

All of the above does not change my mind about the costing of a multi Billion pound project 6 yrs in advance being an inexact science.

Banks, building societies, the capitalist casino economy ? read the papers and you’ll get a hint at what I’m getting at.

Nick said...

Nope, I'm not sure what the market-based problems faced by banks and building societies have to do with a government body getting their sums monumentally wrong when they put together a budget from quotes gathered from tendering third parties, so please explain.

The average overspend on public-sector projects is about 1/3. Is this also caused by the capitalist casino economy? If so, why does the private sector not have similar levels of overspend?

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Nick) 11:56

Banks, Building Societies, Stock Exchange experts are simply an example of how difficult it is to predict what will happen it’s like a casino and these people are experts, I think that’s a valid argument.

“why does the private sector not have similar levels of overspend“ ?

I thought that Banks, Building Societies etc. were the private sector.

Nick said...

Again, I have to disagree.

Speculating on volatile stock or against market conditions (as with the root causes of the credit crunch) is very different to gathering and presenting costings for a tangible product or service such as a sporting event, reduced class sizes or IT projects (which centralised governments of all stripes are notoriously bad at).

To stick with the Olympics as an example, the time frame the budget was delivered in and the PAC report was presented in is too short to have been affected by the longer-term economic environment: both reflected the current and prevailing conditions.

Yet the Public Accounts Committee found that the government, despite having access to figures and multiple quotes from tendering private sector companies which reflected their projected costs for the project's completion under the prevailing conditions, did not present an accurate or fair budget.

So, incompetence or misrepresentation?

Something like the collapse of the subprime market isn't due to overspend: it's down to a pursuit of profits without enough thought for long-term consequences. That's very different to blowing more money than is needed on projects occurring within a set time frame.

I suppose you could argue that the voracious capitalists behind the banking sector's problems are as incompetent as their public-sector counterparts. But don't you expect more from both?

Apologies for length!