In the month of April 2010, Torridge District council spent nearly £4,300,000, but a good whack of that was council tax paid to Devon, the police, the fire and the parish precepts. That’s £3,647,000 (if I’ve managed to key in the figures correctly, my hands being so cold because I can’t afford to have the heating on AND pay my council tax) leaving £653,000.
Of that £13,416 was spent on car leasing. With a further £34,665 (rounding down) spent on fuel and parts. That’s over £48,000 spent on transport … in 1 month. That’s over 7% of the monthly spend. And using the basic measurements, that’s the council tax from 437 homes for the entire year, or 28 businesses, just to pay the transport costs for 1 month for Torridge staff.
Over £5,000 was spent on staff training.
Nearly £20,000 is spent on “professional fees”.
Just short of £11,000 was spent on professional subscriptions. I have included this as an unnecessary cost because, presumably, should Torridge be combined with other authorities, these costs would already be paid by the larger authority. For that reason, we also make note of £117,400 spent on computers – software, hardware, support services. A further £11,00 was spent on books and other publications.
We then have electricity and heating, excluding street lighting, we have just over £3200 which will probably be toppoed next month because this does seem low from other months I’ve seen.
So far that’s £215,600 and they haven’t actually done anything yet. I’ve left broadband and telephone charges out of this because they’d probably be covered by whichever authority was in control.
There’s a regular amount paid in bank charges to Santander. This month it’s £625 which is actually not that far off what they’re charging me.
Another strange item which crops up fairly regularly is “dealing with applications”. The first one related to advertising with respect to Holsworthy offices and was paid to A&N Media and Finance Service Limited. I can only think that Torridge actually employ outside agencies to source and employ their staff because, for all they spout on about their staff earning management qualifications, their staff are incapable of employing the right staff in the first place, the outside agency perpetuating this incompetence by employing staff who are both incapable of employing the right staff and recognising that the employment of the outside agency is a waste of public money.