Essex County Council spends £8million on consultants

Echo: Essex County Council spends £8million on consultants Essex County Council spends £8million on consultants

CONSULTANTS cost County Hall more than £8.6million last year, new figures show.

Spending included a £1.5million fee to PricewaterhouseCoopers as part of the authority’s money saving Customer Transformation Programme.

A Freedom of Information request has revealed the amount spent in the 2012/3 financial year. County Hall has also already spent £2.5million up until the end of November in this financial year, including £184,000 to Ricardo AEA for work on biowaste.

The council also spent £33.9million on agency staff last year and has clocked up £18.5million until the end of November.

In a statement, the county council said: “The use of consultants can be a cost effective way of accessing professional expertise in relation to short-term or oneoff pieces of work, where there is no or inadequate in-house capacity or capability.

“For example, consultants have been used on a number of the council’s ambitious transformation projects to enable the council to concentrate spending on frontline services.

“Essex County Council has a continual drive to reduce costs in this area to improve value for money.

“As part of the council’s transformation programme the council works in partnership with Capita for the recruitment of staff, including agency or interim staff, with the exception of jobs within the school’s service.”

But Jamie Huntman, Ukip group leader at County Hall, said: “I don’t understand why there is a need for so many consultants.

“I have never once hired one in my business and I think it is an extravagance we can ill afford in these austere times.

“It seems an awful lot of money when the administration is asking the taxpayers of Essex to cough up more money in council tax next year.

“The officers at County Hall seem capable and skilled in their areas of expertise, so why is it we need to create another tier of expenses?”

 

Comments (7)

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1:00pm Thu 30 Jan 14

Howard Cháse says...

They can consult me any time. Reasonable rates and pie/ale demands available here
They can consult me any time. Reasonable rates and pie/ale demands available here Howard Cháse
  • Score: 2

2:18pm Thu 30 Jan 14

Kim Gandy says...

Howard Cháse wrote:
They can consult me any time. Reasonable rates and pie/ale demands available here
You get free lunches at County Hall, forget the pie, try smoked salmon or roast pork with claret and all the trimmings.

Oh sorry, you're not a councillor. You just pay for it instead.
[quote][p][bold]Howard Cháse[/bold] wrote: They can consult me any time. Reasonable rates and pie/ale demands available here[/p][/quote]You get free lunches at County Hall, forget the pie, try smoked salmon or roast pork with claret and all the trimmings. Oh sorry, you're not a councillor. You just pay for it instead. Kim Gandy
  • Score: 1

2:18pm Thu 30 Jan 14

Kim Gandy says...

Howard Cháse wrote:
They can consult me any time. Reasonable rates and pie/ale demands available here
You get free lunches at County Hall, forget the pie, try smoked salmon or roast pork with claret and all the trimmings.

Oh sorry, you're not a councillor. You just pay for it instead.
[quote][p][bold]Howard Cháse[/bold] wrote: They can consult me any time. Reasonable rates and pie/ale demands available here[/p][/quote]You get free lunches at County Hall, forget the pie, try smoked salmon or roast pork with claret and all the trimmings. Oh sorry, you're not a councillor. You just pay for it instead. Kim Gandy
  • Score: 1

2:31pm Thu 30 Jan 14

Diannah says...

Back in June 2012, the Telegraph ran a report about Essex County Council having spent £5m on fast food, trips abroad, make-up, clubbing and theme park days out. Now we hear they have spent millions on consultants.

No wonder they are having to close schools and much needed community groups to fund their decadent lifestyle!
Back in June 2012, the Telegraph ran a report about Essex County Council having spent £5m on fast food, trips abroad, make-up, clubbing and theme park days out. Now we hear they have spent millions on consultants. No wonder they are having to close schools and much needed community groups to fund their decadent lifestyle! Diannah
  • Score: 2

4:25pm Thu 30 Jan 14

Howard Cháse says...

All their mates are consultants I reckon
All their mates are consultants I reckon Howard Cháse
  • Score: 0

6:05pm Thu 30 Jan 14

woolstone says...

Now we know why they have turned the street lights out in most areas so they can afford to waste our money. Why is it Southend have made changes to street lighting, but don't have to turn the lights out at night, somethings just don't add up.
Now we know why they have turned the street lights out in most areas so they can afford to waste our money. Why is it Southend have made changes to street lighting, but don't have to turn the lights out at night, somethings just don't add up. woolstone
  • Score: 0

12:30pm Fri 31 Jan 14

iknowbetter says...

woolstone wrote:
Now we know why they have turned the street lights out in most areas so they can afford to waste our money. Why is it Southend have made changes to street lighting, but don't have to turn the lights out at night, somethings just don't add up.
Because Southend Council with all their faults have decided to look at the long term cost saving measures and not knee jerk short term cost saving, like Castle Point have done.
[quote][p][bold]woolstone[/bold] wrote: Now we know why they have turned the street lights out in most areas so they can afford to waste our money. Why is it Southend have made changes to street lighting, but don't have to turn the lights out at night, somethings just don't add up.[/p][/quote]Because Southend Council with all their faults have decided to look at the long term cost saving measures and not knee jerk short term cost saving, like Castle Point have done. iknowbetter
  • Score: 0

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