Was Plebgate linked to corruption in Mitchell’s foreign aid dept?

It is a pity no one has fully investigated Manchester City Council’s inability to properly account for the millions of EU grant money it received? Especially as local communities have been torn apart, simply to allow property developers to enrich themselves, whilst not delivering what they had been contracted to deliver. It does not help, that the EU left Neil Kinnock (former leader of the Labour Party) in charge of the anti-corruption department, despite he, himself being implicated in corruption. The chief investigator in the department did produce a report into the corruption in the EU, to be only sacked.

The SKWAWKBOX

Very interesting reading, this article – backed by testimony to both the UK and European parliaments.

Mitchell is apparently spending huge amounts of money trying to whitewash himself of the abuse of police officers that led to the ‘plebgate’ scandal (which may not be what you think). But what’s underneath doesn’t wash.

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Manchester’s property bubble

Richard Leese, leader of the totally Labour-controlled Manchester City Council, along with the Council’s Chief Executive, Howard Bernstein.  Are constantly promoting the need for more offices, hotels, retail units and ‘homes-to-buy’, despite the fact we have a surplus.  In other words, supply exceeds demand by some considerable margin, which any visitor to Manchester can easily observe.

In a recent copy of Commercial Property Register, North West, June – Sept 2014.  It can be easily determined we have an excess of office space.  Meanwhile, in the Hotel sector, they are boasting of exceptional hotel occupancy rates.  From the Business News, 2nd October 2014:

In the first eight months of 2014 the city centre had an average occupancy rate of 76% – a figure previously unmatched at this point in the year since records began. This figure has been sustained by record weekday rates (75% average YTD) and strong performing weekend rates (81% average YTD).

In April of this year, the Manchester Evening News published an article about the record occupation rates.  Claiming there were three days where the occupancy rate was at 98%.  This still allows for some slack, and with the average year to date (YTD) figures of 75% weekdays and 81%.  There is still plenty of room at the inn, so why is there any real need for more hotels to be built?  1 in 4 empty rooms during weekdays and 1 in 5 empty at weekends, how is this economical?  If the hotel business was so vibrant and profitable, why did Forte Hotels, put Salford’s 5=star hotel, The Lowry Hotel, up for sale.  Especially it sit across the River Irwell, from Manchester City Centre.  Some of the rooms presently occupied, will be occupied by contractors working on all this new build.

From Homes from Empty Homes:

Current Empty Homes Statistics

The data is obtained from council tax information.  The data is supplied by owners of empty homes who report their properties as empty to their council. Councils usually offer exemptions from council tax for empty homes, which gives an incentive for owners to report thier property as empty.Click here for a detailed regional breakdown.

In 2013, the figures for Manchester were, 209,138 total dwellings, of which 5,399, 2.58% were empty, whilst 2,780, 1.33% were long term empty.  So why is Manchester City Council still pursuing a policy of demolishing perfectly fit council homes?  Only to build more ‘homes-to-buy’, nobody can afford.  As well as wasting council revenues on pursuing compulsory purchase orders (CPOs)?  Just so that some speculators can enrich themselves?  The council now videos their council meetings, which people may find either amusing or pathetic, especially as a number of important documents were not available, allegedly

Manchester’s emissions

Manchester City Council recently published their latest State of the City 2013 – 14 report.  Nowadays, the council does not show comparisons between the different wards.  Except for a vague consultation of people’s satisfaction with life and how people from different ethnic backgrounds, from 2010.  Is this because the comparison between different wards, shows that the worst performing wards, are those of the senior councillors, Richard Leese (Crumpsall), Pat Karney (Harpurhey) and Rosa Battle (Bradford) for example.  I have heard a story, that Donna Ludford, the replacement for Jim Battle (ex-Deputy Leader (Ancoats) and now deputy Police Commissioner), has had her friends telling people she is no longer a councillor.  It would appear, she is feeling the pressure from the people of Ancoats who are totally dissatisfied with the performance of Manchester City Council.

My initial interest in the council’s report was in their section on the Environment and Climate Change, pages 148 to 155.  They do admit that the annual objective for Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) have been exceeded.  They try to give the impression that Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions have fallen in Manchester since 2005 by 16.1%.  They have in reality fallen by only 10%, having risen from 2,745.2 in  2011, to 2,944.8 in 2012: Manchester’s emissions.  They do not put a link to the Department of Environment and Climate Change’s (DECC), Local Authority Carbon Dioxide emissions which was published 26th June 2014.  Instead, they used outdated information, stating 2012 data would be available in the summer of 2014.  Why did they not delay publication of the more update data was available?  And of course, these emissions are only estimation, and could an under-estimation of the real emissions, especially as emissions due to aviation are not included.

Manchester City Council seem unable to properly account for their on energy usage, therefore are unable to accurately estimate their own emissions.  From what I constantly observe walking around Manchester, is the amount of wasted energy on the part of Manchester City Council.

2013-12-30 23.24.34
Manchester Central Library, at 23:34hrs, when it was shut to the public and no work was being carried out on it.
Manchester Town Hall annexe at 00:55hrs, whilst no work being carried out.
Manchester Town Hall annexe at 00:55hrs, whilst no work being carried out.
Manchester Central Conference Centre at 01:00hrs.
Manchester Central Conference Centre at 01:00hrs.

Manchester suffers from some of the worst health outcomes with residents having a low ‘good’ general health expectation and a low life expectancy.   These are indications that Manchester City Council has failed totally, in addressing major issues that negatively impact on Mancuians.  Despite all their hype, they have failed time and again and Manchester has not been resilient to climate change.