I don’t imagine that Cllr Richard Kemp, a Lib Dem councillor in Liverpool since 1975, was ever a strong supporter of the Lib Dems going into coalition with the Conservatives. He is the “leading” Lib Dem councillor (meaning that he gets paid £32,337 for being the Vice Chairman of the Local Government Association.) But that doesn’t mean his view is representative of Lib Dem councillors – who, in recent years, are far more likely to be found in coalition with Conservatives running Town Halls than with Labour.
Anyway the BBC reportthat Cllr Kemp has written to Nick Clegg demanding that he should “rein in” the Communities Secretary Eric Pickles because “his behaviour is a disgrace.”
Cllr Kemp, doesn’t like Grant Shapps either. Cllr Kemp says they:
“continually put forward the idea that all the savings at this massively high level can be made by increased efficiency, cuts in a small number of salaries, raiding reserves that are not needed”.
Grant Shapps says Liverpool has already cut 48 posts saving more than £4 million:
“I don’t think even Richard Kemp could deny this move will protect plenty of front line staff.”
Here is another suggestion for Liverpool City Council, if they want to find savings that won’t hit the frontline. Why not cancel their £115,000 LGA sub? Sadly, I think that might mean Cllr Kemp was no longer eligible to be the Vice Chairman.
Sunday 7am update:
Listen to Cllr Kemp and Grant Shapps debate the possibilities for local government savings on the Today programme: