Hi Its Chasmal here following up on Tonys piece on Leeds Council and Rebecca Charlwoods campaign to slash the number of clubs in the City and deny about 300 people a way of making a living.
The naivety that is being displayed by the Council is quite frankly beyond belief. It is to me quite obvious that the current Charlwood campaign is designed to remove Red Leopard and Wildcats from their current location in Leeds city centre. The Council aim to achieve this by either forcing them to change locations or by revoking their operating licenses, despite their being not a single infringement of their conditions of trading.
Lets look at this....
If the Council choose to revoke the SEV licenses, they will be taken to court and this will include a judicial review, which will be expensive because the Council would probably lose.
If a forced move of premises is the method of attack, the Council may well find themselves liabke for the costs associated with the move. Lets have a look at this in more detail and see what the cost centres would be...
Costs associated with settlement of outstanding lease period...
Legal fees for the above,
Cost of locating suitable premises,
Cost of ensuring new premises meet all safety and fire regulations,
Fit out and decoration of new premises,
Costs associated with move to new premises.
A ball park estimate of the above figures places the liability at around £2 million, but don't forget there are two, possibly three venues that may be involved, so lets total it out at around £5 million.
So in other words, Rebecca Charlwood is aiming to commit the Council to a potential liability of £5 million, with the full knowledge that the Council is suffering severe budget cuts, needing save £55 million in the coming year. In an article you can read here, the full extent of the cut backs being contemplated by the Council are as follows....
Eight residential homes and four adult day centres could close, but hey that's alright because lets face it, the security and safety of the elderly is nowhere near as important as getting those awful clubs away from the Town Hall.
A grant for school uniforms could be scrapped and nursery fees may rise, but still remember that education standards are meaningless when considered against the evil of lapdancing clubs.
More than 300 public service jobs will also be shed, but maybe that's not so bad because the Council can provide some kind of job training scheme similar to the one that Rachel Reeves suggested for unemployed lap dancers and club staff. Oh sorry they can't because they have no money.
Apparently Council leader, Keith Wakefield, said “painful decisions” had to be made in order to “protect front line services”, but he didn't mention anything about 'painful decisions' being made in order to protect the intellectual vanity of Rebecca Charlwood.
“What we have actually found by slight (sic) of hand, smoke and mirrors, is that our grant cut has meant we have had to find £55m. That makes it one of the worst settlements in the country – except for Bristol, the worst settlement out of the core cities. It’s still very much the northern cities taking the hit.”
Well I think I can safely say that club owners in Leeds have that the Council are dab hands at sleight of hand and smoke and mirrors themselves as they contemplate reserving about £5 million to close some clubs.
But at least the Council can get the cash they need by charging the public more for services. Apparently some of their ideas include.....
* Increasing Council house rents, garage rents and service charges by 5.9 per cent;
* Increasing children’s nursery fees by £2 per day;
* Increasing sport charges by approximately 4 per cent;
* Increasing bereavement charges by 7.5 per cent, although hardship grants will be available.
* Increasing parking charges for motorists up until 8pm
* Increasing the cost of residential car parking permits.
* Starting to charge for previously free adult social care services and free annual city events, such as the Party in the Park.
* Scrapping some free home-to-school/college travel from September, which would save £2.8m, or about half what the Council will need to relieve 300 people of their income.
So if you have an elderly relative whose care home has just closed, or you have a child without a school uniform or used to work for the Council and now find yourself jobless, please remember that Rebecca Charlwood not did nothing to help, but she in fact made things worse.
Is it just me or have Leeds Council taken leave of their senses?
Is it just me or are Leeds Council about to demonstrate that they are not fit for purpose?