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Council rejects One Barnet vote
Wednesday, 11 July 2012
Calling for a vote: Labour's leader Alison Moore
Rejected: Richard Cornelius and his party's majority ruled out the chance of a referendum
TORY councillors rejected calls for a public vote on the One Barnet programme on Tuesday.
Labour leader Alison Moore tabled a motion at the full council meeting at Hendon Town Hall, in The Burroughs, calling for a referendum over the Conservative council’s plans to outsource public services to private firms.
Members of the Barnet Alliance For Public Services staged a protest before the meeting and then cheered from the public gallery as Ms Moore stold councillors it was “not too late to pull back and have a rethink”.
“This is such a fundamental change to local services and a change of such magnitude that it will touch every single person’s life in the borough,” she said.
“So far residents have not yet been formally asked whether they agree with it. It is quite literally a gamble with council taxpayers’ money.”
Speaking over jeers from the public gallery, council leader Richard Cornelius rejected Ms Moore’s claims.
“This is not a gamble,” he said. “This is carefully planned. This will tie us into contracts, yes, but they will be controlled by directly elected councillors and they will have the ability to scrutinise the service.”
Despite being backed by Liberal Democrats Jack Cohen, Susette Palmer and Lord Munroe Palmer, Labour’s motion was defeated by the Tory majority to cries of “shame” from the gallery.
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Sir Ray Tindle
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