Councillors in Wirral are to examine a report into the latest mind-boggling financial fiasco at Wallsey Clown Hall. The Department of Adult Social Services has racked up debts of £24.7m, around £11m of which will have to be written off. An independent report says chief officers in the department, legal officials and finance mandarins were guilty of a collective corporate failure. This comes on top of a wave of other damning reports, whistleblowing and handsome pay offs for officers at the beleaguered authority.
But who should the author of this independent review be, than none other than one Eugene Sullivan, former chief of the spending watchdog the Audit Commission, an organisation broken up because ‘it had lost its way’ . Mr Sullivan, now an independent consultant, was paid £180,000 a year as bureau chief, spent £18,000 staying in top hotels and had a £4000 allowance for travelling the few yards from his hotel to office. I guess he should know a thing or two about wasting money.
He reports on residential and non residential adult care debt:
“Over the years the Chief Officers in DASS,Legal Department and the Finance Department were aware of the growing problem on aged debt. There has been a corporate failure to understand the scale and consequence of this issue.None of the Departments has taken effective action to ensure this matter was addressed.It should have been recognised as a serious corporate risk which was not being mitigated.It had gone on for so long ,and become so big and complicated ,no one seemed to know how to address it or should take ownership for addressing it….”
HHmmm…wonder how much he got paid?….these independent consultancy chaps dont come cheap you know…