Refinancing PFI contract just one cost-cutting suggestion from Independent councillors

Ahead of next week’s budget setting at the Isle of Wight council, Ian Stephens, Leader of the Island Independent Group, announces they will be issuing an alternative budget.

Ian Stephens

This in from Cllr Ian Stephens on behalf of the Island Independent Group. Ed


The Island Independent Group will be putting forward an alternative budget for consideration by the Isle of Wight Council next Wednesday.

Details will be announced on Friday, but will include an innovative proposal to refinance the PFI Highways Contract and a prudent financial re-structuring of the Council’s corporate loans to release up to £3.5m of revenue to mitigate the Council’s desperate financial position.

Avoiding unpalatable cuts
The money that may potentially be released from refinancing the PFI Contract and corporate loan re-structure, can be used to avoid many of the most unpalatable cuts proposed by the Conservative Administration.

Councillor Ian Stephens, Leader of the Island Independent Group, said:

“The Independent Group have been working hard on our budget proposals. It is a difficult task as there are very few opportunities left to make acceptable savings, after having over £70m of cuts imposed on us by the Government in the last few years, so we have had to be innovative and creative.

“The plan to refinance the PFI is just such a proposal and has the potential to release over £1.3 million back into the Council budget. The Independent Group have always worked to try and minimise the effect of Government austerity on the Isle of Wight and this approach is once again our key consideration in making these proposals.

“Together with a sensible restructuring of various loans, overall there is scope to put £3.5million back into the annual revenue budget to protect services for the community.

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Thursday, 22nd February, 2018 5:26pm

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Filed under: Budget Cuts, Island-wide, Isle of Wight Council, Isle of Wight News, Top story

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16 Comments on "Refinancing PFI contract just one cost-cutting suggestion from Independent councillors"

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holdmyheadinmyhands

He got the money, officers carried out the precument procedure and ordered the FB6…… councillors are not involved with precument. If anything had been wrong with the Indie administration the LEP would not have parted with the money.

holdmyheadinmyhands

I do like it when people think they know what actually happened ……

electrickery

There’s a helluva lot of “not my fault, Gov” going on here. Cllr Ward would be proud!

If the concept of re-financing the PFI was valid pre-election and is still valid now, why isn’t the Tory admin at least us telling why it can’t be done, they having thoroughly investigated it as they are duty-bound to do? Surely not because it’s not their idea?

CB500

Ian Stephens did nothing ( other than blather a lot and waste money on outside companies for advice ) when he had the chance on PFI so his suggestions now are just more hot air. Thanks for losing Undercliff drive and the PTEC million Ian ( by the way I was idiot enough to vote for you ).

Phil Jordan
I’m not sure what you mean about “have the chance with the pfi” but let’s be clear about this, the PFI was a poorly drawn up contract under the previous conservative administration that the Independent group inherited in May 2013. The contract has caused endless disputes that continue to this day over a wide range of service delivery. When that contract started in April 2013 it was… Read more »
CB500

Phil. I hate the PFI and have been a vocal detractor since long before it started. However, you were in charge for years. Why didn’t you do something when you could? Talk now is cheap. Undercliff drive happened on your watch. A child could have pointed out the flaws but you forged ahead during the wettest winter in memory. PTEC – where did the million quid go?

Phil Jordan
So, firstly, I am not here defending the PFI contract. What do you have in mind when you ask that *we* should have done something when we could? Do what exactly? To achieve what exactly? I am aware you are against the PFI… what is the fundamental problem you have with it? Is it the broad public/private financial agreements incorporating privatisation with commercial interest in public service… Read more »
Colin

Nice to see you back on here, Phil. The current lot either have nothing to say or seem to have a blanket ban on engaging with us mere mortals…

Geoff Brodie

Not really fair. I engage when I have time, which is more than you can say for Phil’s former colleagues.

Colin

Sorry Geoff, I know you do; I was refering to those of the blue variety who are happy to issue press releases but not to discuss them.

Geoff Brodie

No problem

CB500

Phil. Succinctly, ( you might want to try it ) why wait till now for refinancing? You were there 4 years why not then? My problem with PFI is simply a lot of money paid to a bunch of investors for a generally shoddy job. Undercliff – you should have spent the PTEC million you threw away on legal fees and got the job done right.

Phil Jordan
To be precise: I was in the process of (considering) re-financing the PFI. I spent much time trying to get *us* to the position where we could trigger that positive outcome for the council and this Island. I’m afraid that developments in January 2017 derailed that initiative. To be clear. we were in the administration for (approx) three and a half years (woefully short of what was… Read more »
Tim

Weren’t Ian Stephens and the Indie administration the masterminds behind ordering FB6?

Phil Jordan
Tim: Depends on what you mean by “masterminds”. The Independent administration did manage to secure the funding for the Fb from the SLEP. Entirely due to the skill and effort by Cllr Ian Stephens who was the Council rep on the SLEP Board at the time (along with the CE) Mindful, of course, that in spite of saying to the contrary in the run up to the… Read more »
tr2015
let me get this straight – the Independents managed to raise the money for the FB, but you unwittingly bought a camel when you wanted a race horse, but its not your fault as you know nothing of race horse design, and for this you want, what, to blame the SLEP? So now the fiasco is all their fault is it? I’m just amazed the Cons haven’t… Read more »