Herefordshire Council leader Tony Johnson meets Prime Minister David Cameron over cuts

Prime Minister David Cameron.

Prime Minister David Cameron.

First published in News
Last updated
Ledbury Reporter: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Reporter

THE Prime Minister has heard first hand how cuts have forced Herefordshire Council into fighting for fairer funding.

But a meeting between Prime Minister David Cameron, council leader councillor Tony Johnson, secretary of state for local government Eric Pickles and his under-secretary Brandon Lewis offered little beyond suggestions for possible extra funding.

Coun Johnson did come away with compliments for the council's "proactive attitude" to coping with cuts and an undertaking - without commitment - for the council's block grant to get a fresh look.

Pitching the fairer funding fight is now a priority for the council in facing a future as a far smaller organisation with a focus on commissioning.

Full council recently backed a motion calling for a better deal on funding for the county's schools.
Coun Johnson has presented the council as a case study to the County Council Network as it pressed for more central government support for rural authorities at its conference earlier this month.

"It is important that we work with other Councils and present a well-structured argument which illustrates the additional costs of services in a rural community," said Coun Johnson.

Comments (9)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

10:20am Thu 30 Jan 14

Herefordian07 says...

How charming for councillor Johnson to go cap in hand to his Tory master like Oliver Twist, "Can I have some more sir?" "No" came the stern reply wrapped up in a praise sandwich "But you have done well to cut all services to the rate paying souls of Hereford, now return to your backwater and don't bother me again". I wonder how much the expenses for this futile trip are? Dear lord we are doomed!
How charming for councillor Johnson to go cap in hand to his Tory master like Oliver Twist, "Can I have some more sir?" "No" came the stern reply wrapped up in a praise sandwich "But you have done well to cut all services to the rate paying souls of Hereford, now return to your backwater and don't bother me again". I wonder how much the expenses for this futile trip are? Dear lord we are doomed! Herefordian07
  • Score: 12

10:33am Thu 30 Jan 14

oldergit says...

Just keep putting Council Tax up and Cameron will insist on saying, '' We have frozen Council Tax.''
Just keep putting Council Tax up and Cameron will insist on saying, '' We have frozen Council Tax.'' oldergit
  • Score: 10

12:42pm Thu 30 Jan 14

saidflo says...

Comments are no longer disabled on this story about Hereford funding and the Meeting between Cameron, Pickles, and our own Tony Johnson. ALL busily congratulating themselves on the wonderful job done in Herefordshire!?!!
Talking about the CUTS!
Ominous and PR gem.
Please give us some more money David :D
We need to build a new ( ?) (fill in the blank yourself) (choose anything obsolete from the sixties, to enable big companies to leach more money out of our county).
Well done Tony!
Comments are no longer disabled on this story about Hereford funding and the Meeting between Cameron, Pickles, and our own Tony Johnson. ALL busily congratulating themselves on the wonderful job done in Herefordshire!?!! Talking about the CUTS! Ominous and PR gem. Please give us some more money David :D We need to build a new ( ?) (fill in the blank yourself) (choose anything obsolete from the sixties, to enable big companies to leach more money out of our county). Well done Tony! saidflo
  • Score: 8

1:11pm Thu 30 Jan 14

bobby47 says...

Good Lord above. How did he manage to get through the gates? If he'd come and tapped on my door, my first thought would have been, 'what's Simple Jack off Tropic Thunder doing tapping on my door asking for money'. I'd have said, 'clear off. You don't make me happy. Be gone. Go bother someone else'.
It's desperate ain't it! Good grief! That its come to this. Begging the Premier for some scraps from the table. Well if we ain't getting any cash to soothe our pain and angst then send a gang of bloody salt scrapers up here and rid us of these vast sodium deposits that are affixed to our new empire of dirt. Everytime I drive past this new retail development, the vein in my neck throbs, I scream, 'Lord give me a mallet and five minutes with Jarvis' and I go home angry that our future has been wiped away by some asset stripping suits who've taken us all for a ride.
Bloody hell! What with this little jaunt to London and Phillips travelling across Europe begging for money we can hardly complain when some poor soul from some impoverished place in East Europe hands us a little note that reads, 'please give me money. I've ten kids. They've all got headlice and we're bloody starving'.
We are doomed!
Good Lord above. How did he manage to get through the gates? If he'd come and tapped on my door, my first thought would have been, 'what's Simple Jack off Tropic Thunder doing tapping on my door asking for money'. I'd have said, 'clear off. You don't make me happy. Be gone. Go bother someone else'. It's desperate ain't it! Good grief! That its come to this. Begging the Premier for some scraps from the table. Well if we ain't getting any cash to soothe our pain and angst then send a gang of bloody salt scrapers up here and rid us of these vast sodium deposits that are affixed to our new empire of dirt. Everytime I drive past this new retail development, the vein in my neck throbs, I scream, 'Lord give me a mallet and five minutes with Jarvis' and I go home angry that our future has been wiped away by some asset stripping suits who've taken us all for a ride. Bloody hell! What with this little jaunt to London and Phillips travelling across Europe begging for money we can hardly complain when some poor soul from some impoverished place in East Europe hands us a little note that reads, 'please give me money. I've ten kids. They've all got headlice and we're bloody starving'. We are doomed! bobby47
  • Score: 7

6:01pm Thu 30 Jan 14

WYSIATI says...

I wonder if the conversation drifted to what is going to be done if Tory Herefordshire is the first county to go bust, fail to meet statutory obligations and when the wheels really come off.

Perhaps Mr Pickled and David Cumberbund actually want it to go under - the sooner it goes the sooner you can put in place a totally outsourced service. So we get G4S, Serco or some other outsourcing specialist. That way the Govt gets to claim some more private sector jobs created - which are, like most of the million they claim now, actually public sector employees, paid from the public purse but now putting profit into private companies.

The company with the contract pays most much less, the management much more and creams off a nice profit. As for the services - who knows....?

Hopefully Tony warned Cumberbund and Pickled that they need to be careful on the roads if they come to visit
I wonder if the conversation drifted to what is going to be done if Tory Herefordshire is the first county to go bust, fail to meet statutory obligations and when the wheels really come off. Perhaps Mr Pickled and David Cumberbund actually want it to go under - the sooner it goes the sooner you can put in place a totally outsourced service. So we get G4S, Serco or some other outsourcing specialist. That way the Govt gets to claim some more private sector jobs created - which are, like most of the million they claim now, actually public sector employees, paid from the public purse but now putting profit into private companies. The company with the contract pays most much less, the management much more and creams off a nice profit. As for the services - who knows....? Hopefully Tony warned Cumberbund and Pickled that they need to be careful on the roads if they come to visit WYSIATI
  • Score: 12

7:52pm Fri 31 Jan 14

megilleland says...

Its already happening with The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership calling all the shots.
http://www.marchesle
p.org.uk/document-li
brary/cat_view/11-ma
rches-lep-draft-esif
-strategy-2014-2020
Herefordshire Council used to decide our local future, but the plan is regionalism via the EU. So from having 58 councillors with only half a dozen of them in a Cabinet making all the main local decisions we are heading towards being given grants from the EU if we follow their doctrine.
The Tories have starved the local councils of grant aid diverting the money to LEPs. The amazing thing is the LEP's decisions made on our behalf are taken by unelectable characters from the business world who know what's good for us.
http://www.marchesle
p.org.uk/marcheslepn
ews/154-marches-lep-
board-appointments
Its already happening with The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership calling all the shots. http://www.marchesle p.org.uk/document-li brary/cat_view/11-ma rches-lep-draft-esif -strategy-2014-2020 Herefordshire Council used to decide our local future, but the plan is regionalism via the EU. So from having 58 councillors with only half a dozen of them in a Cabinet making all the main local decisions we are heading towards being given grants from the EU if we follow their doctrine. The Tories have starved the local councils of grant aid diverting the money to LEPs. The amazing thing is the LEP's decisions made on our behalf are taken by unelectable characters from the business world who know what's good for us. http://www.marchesle p.org.uk/marcheslepn ews/154-marches-lep- board-appointments megilleland
  • Score: 9

8:36pm Fri 31 Jan 14

M M says...

Does Tony know that this wonderful Council has closed the toilets in Hereford and the road surfaces resemble craters in a war zone?
Does Tony know that this wonderful Council has closed the toilets in Hereford and the road surfaces resemble craters in a war zone? M M
  • Score: 5

8:40pm Fri 31 Jan 14

M M says...

Sorry I meant Dave that's the trouble having TV on .....Silly Me !!
Sorry I meant Dave that's the trouble having TV on .....Silly Me !! M M
  • Score: 1

6:05pm Sun 2 Feb 14

Cllr Liz Harvey says...

megilleland is right to worry about what the LEP is up to and why ... Overview & Scrutiny still can't get sensible answers about how this body is constituted and held accountable for public funds. It's horrific to think that all government and EU funding is to pass through this unelected and unaccountable entity which has Cllr Phillips sticking to it like, well - you soldiers out there fill in the metaphor.

Did any of you notice that the draft investment strategy for the LEP was consulted on publicly last month for all of 3 weeks, and that after it had already been submitted to government?

I found it odd that the strategy seems to be conveniently forgetting that Ledbury has a link to the M50 which has traffic diverting from the LEP's preferred story for traffic movement which takes everything south from Leominster, through Hereford and on to Ross. Fancy that! Just guessing this truth doesn't tally with the case being made to beg for funding for road projects which are totally unaffordable in the Core Strategy.

I worry we have councillors and officers who have already given up on Herefordshire as a viable entity and the LEP is just one of many ways in which exit strategies are being put in place.

We may need to change my party's name before too long if people don't rear up and fight to keep Herefordshire whole. All very sad.
megilleland is right to worry about what the LEP is up to and why ... Overview & Scrutiny still can't get sensible answers about how this body is constituted and held accountable for public funds. It's horrific to think that all government and EU funding is to pass through this unelected and unaccountable entity which has Cllr Phillips sticking to it like, well - you soldiers out there fill in the metaphor. Did any of you notice that the draft investment strategy for the LEP was consulted on publicly last month for all of 3 weeks, and that after it had already been submitted to government? I found it odd that the strategy seems to be conveniently forgetting that Ledbury has a link to the M50 which has traffic diverting from the LEP's preferred story for traffic movement which takes everything south from Leominster, through Hereford and on to Ross. Fancy that! Just guessing this truth doesn't tally with the case being made to beg for funding for road projects which are totally unaffordable in the Core Strategy. I worry we have councillors and officers who have already given up on Herefordshire as a viable entity and the LEP is just one of many ways in which exit strategies are being put in place. We may need to change my party's name before too long if people don't rear up and fight to keep Herefordshire whole. All very sad. Cllr Liz Harvey
  • Score: 6

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree