To anyone that cares about Stoke-on-Trent at all, this piece is important!
In 2008, Stoke-on-Trent city council had £98 million in of your money invested in banks and building societies around the world.
Then came the banking crash, and the city council lost £5 million, something that wouldn't have happened if someone in the finance department had read an e-mail forewarning of the crash. So that left £93 million.
£13 million of this sum was "on call", meaning that it was invested in the account for a short period of time, sometimes as short as overnight. Removal of this leaves us with £80 million.
Now, a Freedomn of Information request as to where this money went, told us that £43 million had gone "... to pay some bills", the e-mail stating that the city council weren't sure about where the money originated, and knew where it had gone, but it was untraceable!
£43 MILLION UNTRACEABLE!!
I contacted the Assitant Head of Finance and said I didn't believe that this money was untraceable, and asked him where it had gone. He told me the money was put into the city councils current account. I said, "give me a copy of the statement for the account, and I'll trace the money myself.
At this point I was told I was being unreasonable, and all dialogue stopped.
But that still left £37 million of taxpayers money unaccounted for.
It turns out that the remaining money was invested with the governments Debt Management Office, where your millions were going to earn a pathetic £30k in interest!
All attempts to get the city council to tell us of this money have failed, until Terry Cope contacted the DMO.
All that's left in the account is £25 and a quarter million, meaning that £12 million is unaccounted for, and the city council refuse to tell us anything about it!
But why is this money invested in this account if it gives no interest ?
Why not bring the cash back and invest it in the city?
Why are the city council making out that they are skint and are going to struggle to find the extra £3 million in cuts?
Why hasn't Pervez told us about this money, or any of the other councillors?
Why haven't the officers of the council let us know there is £25 million in the bank, and will they be pushing to raise your council tax now?
The Debt Management Office had one other interesting thing to say about Stoke-on-Trent city council, it turns out that they have invested in the DMO from December 09 to December 2010, £708 million!
None of this £80 million was ring fenced, but there is still £55 million of it unaccounted for, the £12 million missing from the account, the £43 million that went to pay some bills, yet it has never been revealed exactly what bills were paid.
Add to this the other financial mismanagement, law breaking deals in contracts, planning, and behind closed door agreements, and even a blindman can see that that Stoke-on-Trent city council is not fit for purpose!
Unanswered questions over millions of taxpayers pounds isn't good enough either, this is the publics money not the councils, far too often these crooks and incompetents forget that.
Pass this on when you've read it, and be sure to ask your councillors why the hell they haven't said or done anything about this, or why you haven't been informed as to what has been going on in the city council.
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