The Shields Gazette reports a call by the Communities Secretary Eric Pickles for councils to loook at saving money by new £10.5m BT centre on Harton Staithes in South Shields.

Birmingham City Council caused controversy by announcing plans to outsource 55 IT posts to India by the end of the year. Indeed Service Birmingham, a joint venture between Birmingham City Council and Capita, has started recruiting in the Indian city of Pune.

But Pickles says:

“I was up in South Tyneside, where they are building a headquarters with BT to do the back offices of other authorities. There is enough capacity there. I would hope my dear chums in Birmingham will have a look at that. I think that might well offer a good solution.”

 No doubt there will be the usual complaints that Pickles comments are contradict localism. They do not. He is giving an opinion. If the South Shields option offers a better deal with Birmingham Council Taxpayers then that would make sense. However if India offers the better deal then I don't see the logic in giving Overseas Aid to that country but refusing to agree to a mutually beneficial business arrangement.

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