As noted earlier Birmingham City Council, a Conservative/Lib Dem coalition, is seeking to tackle its chronic overmanning with the minimum of compulsory redundancies. Shadow Communities Secretary Caroline Flint got herself into a muddle talking about 26,000 job losses. The figure is actually 7,300 – of which 4,300 are being cut and 3,000 moved into a schools cooperative.
The Guardian reports that so far 1,807 staff have taken voluntary redundancy and 1,500 had opted to do so. What about posts where someone retires and the post is deleted? Or where someone retires and another post deleted and the person redeployed to do the job of the person who had retired? Those figures would also be relevant.
So far there have been 302 compulsory redundancies.
After signing that defeatist letter to The Times, the Lib Dem Deputy Leader, Cllr Paul Tilsley, redeems himself a bit with a message that key frontline services can and will be safeguarded:
"This is not a slash-and-burn budget. Over the next 12 months in Birmingham there will be no library closures, no leisure centre closures, no public toilet closures. Streets will still be cleaned, they will be lit at night, rubbish will be cleared and children will go to school."