07/10/2012 Sunday Politics South West


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The regional pay row at our largest hospital. And the license for


Somerset's badger cull trial is issued, but political controversy


Apology for the loss of subtitles for 2130 seconds


Hello. Coming up on the Sunday Politics in the South West... The


licence for Somerset's badger cull has been issued, Bobby controversy


continues as councillors speak out against the plans. I am joined by


Tudor Evans, Labour leader of Plymouth City Council, and Julie


Girling, Conservative MEP. First up, health workers in Plymouth who have


been drawing up plans to fight proposals for regional pay.


Derriford Hospital says it needs to save �45 million over the next


three years. It has joined with 19 other NHS trusts in the region to


look at pay and conditions. Unions fear that could lead to workers


facing pay cuts of up to 20%. You hear a lot of people saying we


are all in this together, but it seems to be be people on the front


line and those delivering the front care who seemed to be hit hardest.


We asked the Prime Minister whether he approved of NHS trusts in the


south-west looking at regional pay. It is an issue for them. NHS trusts


have a choice of looking at the national framework are looking at


local arrangements. We should allow them to manage the NHS as they see


it effectively. Do we take it from that that he


sees this as a good idea, and do you? The idea has been on the table


for many years. I represent the South West, always the most


expensive place to live. London and the south-east get regional Pate in


effect already. The south-west is or was number two on that list. We


need to look at where the South West might benefit from regional


pride. Do you think networkers down here will benefit, and where will


the extra money come from? -- do you think the workers. The idea is


to save money. It does not mean there is going to be an extra �45


million available. That is true. Doing that as part of the overall


strategy for being more efficient and saving money is not a bad thing.


It is wrong to assume... But there is a pay freeze across the board.


Any savings must presumably come from pay cuts. The unions are


suggesting we could be up to 20%. That is scaremongering, to said


they could be up to 20%. When the pay freeze comes off, which it will,


they will have to negotiate. The unions will be asking for more


money. That is the context in which this should be seen. They will be


looking for increases. This is not a bad thing to bring him to do next.


Do you agree with that, it is actually a positive outcome? I went


to that meeting bad you showed on your front. -- that you should. The


motion was carried unanimously, because we know there any move to


regionalised play is actually a race to the bottom. Do you think


there will be pay increases? course not. They are private every


-- privatising their health service. People coming in need to make a


profit on reducing budgets. The only way they can do that is pay


the staff less. You are against it? Of course. It would be disastrous


for the health service, a race to the bottom for public sector pay.


This idea that we need to cut the public sector to make a private


sector competitive is nonsense. is an issue that is going to run.


Labour do not think there will be unions asking for pay increases


when the freeze ends, that is interesting.


There are plans to privatise some of Cornwall's public services and


they are proving unpopular. 5,000 people have signed a petition


against the scheme which would see libraries among other things part


run by a private company. The council leadership says it will


save millions of pounds and create hundreds of jobs. Vital services


could be cut, say sceptics. It is apparent -- plan considers


believe will save millions a year and create 500 new jobs. BT and an


American firm are in the running to form a partnership with the council


to provide services such as libraries, Pedro and benefit


payments, transferring council staff to the new partnership in the


process. -- services such as library services and pay roll.


would be against the majority of the council and a great swathe at


the general public. They have not only ignored us but ignored the


people. But is a dangerous thing to do for democracy. One couple from


Perranporth to be petition to more than 1,000 people. They say the


vast majority signed up. Were they surprised? No, they were not


surprised but they were extremely surprised that the executive has


the power were to do that, as was I. That is viewed with incredulity by


almost anyone, once you spell out what has happened. The fact but it


is legal is astonishing. It is not rocket science but if something


goes into privatises hands, whether it is part shared or not, companies


want to make a profit. If they do not make a profit, jobs will go,


places will be closed, and we may not have as many libraries or a non


stop shops or whatever they are going to take out to stare -- share


services. In Somerset, a joint venture do not go quite to plan.


This is a classic example of how not to do public procurement.


South West MP directors' anger at a company, South West One. It led to


a �2.1 million overspend this year alone. The they are not saving the


money they said and it is becoming obvious but it is a tissue of


fabrication. Cornwall Council says it is there were not all


partnerships have been successful and they have learnt not to make


that the mistakes. They are confident it will be a good deal


for the county. The us is an exciting opportunity to create new


business in Cornwall but is not seasonal, will create good jobs and


it will be written into contract, we are expecting 500 new jobs to be


created, as a minimum. The commitment will be written into the


contract, with penalties attached if the jobs are not created.


final decision to transfer council services to a new firm is due to be


made next month. Thanks to the petition, the issue is likely to be


debated before then. How much outsourcing does Plymouth


City Council do, for example? Are people in Cornwall right to be


scared? For gave me, they are next door neighbours and I should not


comment on private grief. Everybody out sources, or council steerage to


a lesser or greater extent. If you think about our. Social care, for


example, we buy in care from a range of providers. -- adult social


care. Outsourcing is not anything new. Were this is a departure is


the scale. It is the size and range of services being put out all in


one go. That is what has created the alarm for so many people in


Cornwall and within Cornwall Council. You were in local


government before you became an MEP. How is a bet these kinds of


outsourcing can supposedly saved money while at the same time create


500 jobs, how was it possible -- possible? It is economy of scale.


You can get real productivity gains by joining up what is called back


office function. Where it can lead to job growth in an area is that


you can find, if Plymouth was doing it, they might in fact be employing


people in Plymouth who are paying the benefit cheques in London. In


many cases, but is very beneficial for regions like the south-west,


where people want to live and work. The skill base, in many cases, is


there or is being built. Does that happen in Plymouth? We work in


partnership. There is an audit partnership between three


neighbouring authorities. And the authorities provide services to


each other to share costs and save money. This is different, because


this is bringing a one provider to do a number of... You would not do


it to this scale? The Cabinet are making this decision without


reference to anybody else. They are saying but is because they must. It


is not about mast, they could ask the council to participate and


share the blame. My information is, and councillors are saying they


have not seen figures, they have not been shown figures. How can


councillors avoid problems like that in Somerset, such as we showed


in the front, where the contract went wrong? -- in the film.


Councillors are members of the community, they are not necessarily


business people, they do not necessarily have the skills


themselves. What it is imperative they do is make sure they get the


advice. I do not have any detail on what is happening in Cornwall. I


would be surprised if the Cabinet had made that decision without


getting that level of advice. The Somerset issue is well known


throughout the country as having been a problem. Lessons have been


put known -- learnt. Lots and shared learning information has


been sent out. It does not always work. In Cornwall, been collections


have been heavily criticised, but was outsourced. Serco were


criticised, railway services were criticised. Why did the Tories


think privatisation is better? not think they do. It is not just


Conservative councils who are at source at all. Some of the most


vigorous councils who are at source are not conservative. It is a mixed


bag and it is not a party political issue, it is about combatants and


council level. Some councils are good, some are less good. We will


come back to you after the next topic.


The natural England has issued a licence to allow the culling of


badgers in West Somerset. It means up to 70% of badgers in that area


will be killed with the aim of preventing the spread of TB in


cattle. Pilot,s are also due in Gloucestershire, were some farmers


have voted to not allow becoming of badgers on their land. Some local


farmers try to do the same thing. It has been a tough year for this


former. He found out his herd had contracted TB at the worst possible


time. My wife died on 16th April and I went down on 17th April,


shattered. I did not have my best friend of 48 years with me, it was


awful. Bovine TB is a foreigner problem, but to go early in the


south-west, with 40% of heard tapping an instance of the disease


in 2010. Eco-trials will involve laying bait and shooting badgers at


night. -- the cull trials. There is debate as to whether this will stop


me -- the disease. It could cut instances of bovine TB by 16% but


there are questions about the scientific evidence. Trials are


planned for Costa Show and Somerset. This time could fall into the pilot


area and councillors are concerned. Were have had leaflets from


organisations who were protest and spent every night for six weeks in


the area with loudspeakers, musical instruments, trying to disrupt the


cull. This week Stephen and his fellow independent councillor put


forward a motion asking the council to ban Colling on its land, even


though the council owns very little and in the, Derry, like this car


park. -- very little land in the cull area. Badgers move about. The


council ended up voting to remain neutral, because the Conservative


leader argued there was not the expertise to make a judgment.


is a lot of information made available to us. I am not


sufficiently skilled to determine from that which is the best way to


deal with bovine tuberculosis. councils in Gloucestershire's pilot


area have voted against killing badgers on council owned land.


Others are angry that their area has not done the same. They were


not combatant? Are they confident to look at planning issues or


economic regeneration issues? Taunton Deane Borough Council will


write to the farming minister to Roger their concern. It will urge


the government to devote resources to finding a humane solution to the


programme -- problem of bovine TB. This cull is politically toxic,


that is why we are still having pilates. No one wants to be the


minister in charge of standing up in front of the TV cameras saying


they are going to kill 70% of Britain's Burgess. Would you say


this will run and run? It is a controversial issue. What we have


got here is, let's be clear, but cull is aimed at discovering


whether it is it reasonable to'-- 3 should. -- to shoot the badgers. It


is to find out if it is a reasonable way to do that. Will


protesters will be caught in crossfire? Protesters have done


everything they can do to stop it. They have been to the High Court.


They need to accept that all of the legal redress, all of the legal


Brits are now closed, and if they are irresponsible enough to start


banging drums and blowing whistles and lighting in darkness, when


people are trying to shoot badgers, there could be a terrible accident.


It has to be absolutely clear that it is the responsibility of those


people to refrain from that behaviour. The idea of shooting


badgers in car parks is totally wrong, isn't it? It is run anywhere,


to be honest. At this week's Labour conference we heard that the


science does not support this action anywhere. That is an opinion.


The science clearly is mixed. point is that there is a lot of the


farming community with the Conservative Party and they are


struggling at a local level. The science is not equivocal about that.


If we forget the science for the moment, I am interested in this


subject Ahmed being politically toxic. Labour had various trials


and never achieved anything. We did not kill the badgers and we are not


going to either. You ploughed �50 million into killing by just over


10 years but never did anything about it. A lot of people will find


this whole thing distasteful, to be honest, when you know that the


science is... They might also have said that Labour should not have


ploughed �50 million into killing? Let's focus on what is about to


happen rather than blaming us for what did not happen. Do you want


people running around the south- west with a shot guns, blowing


badgers up in car parks? I have to interrupt. To say that people will


be running around the area with a shot guns, it is not a shot on


trial. Nobody will be out with a shotgun. But would be unsuitable.


Yes, they will be shot, but not with a shot guns. They will not be


done roaming the area. The region - - the reason it is toxic is because


the lack of attempting -- attention to detail, the emotive language, it


is much more serious than that. Before we move on, an update from


Ann Widdecombe, who last week told us better-off pensioners like her


should not get the winter fuel allowance. One of our guests


suggested she give the money back. It turns out she already does. She


gives her an allowance to the Devon Community Foundation which last


winter helped 250 people who could not afford to keep themselves warm.


Now, 60 seconds. Overweight children should be given


Free School moves to improve their eating habits said the Totnes MP.


85% of children who are obese will become obese adults. It is time to


address it. Train passengers were told they


would have to wait even longer for improvements as the government's


tendering process went off the rails.


In Dorset, Virgin's plan to take over NHS services was questioned by


the mayor of Lyme Regis. We need to know what this will do for us


rather than for them. People living near a proposed


incinerator outside Ivybridge were upset by the Environment Agency's


support for the plans. The Devon parlays woman who was


banned from Twitter for her comments about student drinking was


backed by air can't serve her. -- backed by a counsellor.


A busy week. Let's let's get this issue of


giving obese children free school meals. This is something that


Totnes MP NDP is pushing for. Is it something you would support? --


Thomas MP and GP. For someone who has eaten all the pilots -- pies,


we would be better restoring that sports schools partnerships. Have


we to get proper p going again, that would be far more useful. -- P.


There is a link between obesity and poverty, so this could be an


educational programme? Be it sounds very top dance. -- it sounds very


top down. I know she is a GP but I do not like her social programmes.


In his this their nanny state? Ghosh, not often accused of that. I


actually have great respect for Sarah. She has expertise and I'm


listening to her. An idea around trying to help children make better


choices with what they eat is no different than an idea around try


to make the government -- trying to make adults more aware of food


labelling. Why not help children? It is how you do it, the devil is


in the detail. Surely children from wealthy families does not deserve


three means? Maybe they deserved a free meal if that is going to make


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