I just thought I would clarify a few issues on what was said at the recent Independent Group Meeting. Two (HERE and HERE) blogs have already made comment, and I thought I would give you the view of someone who was there.
To recap, the Indi’s at the last full council meeting of Cornwall Council made a statement along the lines of “at the moment we do not understand the reasoning behind the creation of the new role of Cabinet Support Member” (CSM).
Fast forward a few weeks and the Group met to discuss this further. Many around the table made valid points as to why these post got created in the first place (you can come to your own conclusions on this one). After all, the Member Champion role was recently created to ‘support’ Cabinet Members.
The role of Education is an important role, and one that must be taken seriously, but as pointed out again this position has no powers and is seen to some as a stand in for when the Cabinet Member cannot make something, as in Law the role of Children, Education and Families Services cannot be split.
Questions have been asked previously what this role entails, and to date, no Term of Reference has been produced to clarify the role. Again, many pointed out how can you accept a role or put yourself up for that role unless you know what the role is. This question is being re-asked and will be re-asked until an answer is given. Until that time no decision on who (if any) will take up this role.
However, The Indi’s are not really satisfied with the offer of Children’s CSM, as they believe the current Portfolio Holder is doing a good job. Many said that if the current leadership is serious about this ‘joint administration’ then why not give a role in economy, finance or another important area. This very message was sent back to the Leadership.
Many Indi’s are also concerned that they are nothing more than the poor partner, and if the leadership want support in certain areas, then treat the Indi’s with a little more respect. As from what I can see, there is only so much a dog will take in beatings until it bites back.