A new analysis reveals the scope of problems at the ailing Liverpool City Council.
Government commissioners in charge of Liverpool Council’s operations have expressed concern about the local authority’s financial condition as well as how fundamental, day-to-day jobs are being handled.
Following a harsh government inspection report earlier this year, which was ordered after a police corruption probe related to the authority, four Whitehall commissioners were assigned to the local authority.
Former Mayor Joe Anderson was arrested as a result of the probe, though he has since stepped down and denies any wrongdoing.
A landmark building from the 1950s with breathtaking views might be converted into a restaurant.
Along with the commissioners who were appointed in June, his replacements, Mayor Joanne Anderson and Chief Executive Tony Reeves, have been seeking to improve the floundering council.
However, the commissioners’ first report since arriving in the city has revealed the scope of the council’s difficulties, including concerns about leadership, governance, competency, and the financial situation.
While the study acknowledges the ‘hard work, ambition, and dedication of devoted and skilled personnel’ to improve the council, it also claims that their early work has exposed new challenges and revealed that there is a ‘great deal to achieve in the next three years.’
The way simple, day-to-day procedures are carried out is one of the areas of concern.
According to the report: “The standards of core competences such as report writing, decision-making planning, and customer service have bothered us. We appreciate the council’s efforts to build plans for improvement in these areas.” It continues: “Officers and councillors have greeted us with open arms. Senior officers’ initial lack of knowledge and recognition of the significance of our position impeded progress and hampered officers’ capacity to grasp the gravity of the Intervention. The top executive is dealing with this.” While the council and its leaders want change and improvements to come rapidly, the commissioners say this has resulted in a “frenzied rather than purposeful and targeted approach” as evidenced by a lack of prioritization and planning. They claim that the authority is working on it.
Following Max Caller’s examination, the commissioners were sent in to oversee the council’s struggling Regeneration, Property, Highways, and Planning departments. “The summary has come to an end.”