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More financial incompetence at Wiltshire Council

September 14, 2010 5:00 PM

Wiltshire Liberal Democrats today slammed the Conservative Administration in County Hall over the continued mismanagement of the county's money.

At today's cabinet meeting, held in City Hall Salisbury, Conservative councillors finally admitted that there was an £11.7m deficit compared with their cash flow forecast for last year.

The variation from the administration's predictions was almost 50% - £37.3million as against a forecast of £25.6million. This admission comes following the damning external audit report by KPMG which exposed the lack of controls in the county's new financial systems.

It was also revealed that Wiltshire Council borrowed a further £20million in February this year to help cope with the deficit.

Lib Dem Group Leader Jon Hubbard commented after the meeting, "In the last few months the council's Chief Financial Officer has gone - we are told it was 'by mutual consent'.

I wonder whom the cabinet member for finance is going to blame next for this clear incompetence. We keep being told that the problems being unearthed are due to the coming together of five authorities into one. However, four of the five councils were run by the Tories, three of the current Conservative cabinet were leaders of the previous councils and the vast majority of the ruling group were members of the previous councils.

When will the Conservative Administration accept responsibility for the mess they have created and stop trying to blame someone else?"