Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Fine Gael Manifesto - power to the who now?

I would like to direct you to point 1.2.8 in the FG manifesto - "Merge all city and county enterprise boards into Local Government"

There are 35 County and City Enterprise Boards (CEBs) located in each Local
Government area. The role of the Boards is to develop indigenous enterprise potential, to stimulate economic activity (via grants and training programmes) local level and to promote micro-enterprises that employ ten or less. Exchequer funding is allocated by the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment via Enterprise Ireland. The functions of the city and county enterprise boards are broadly duplicated by other economic development agencies operating within the same sphere. The boards are made up of local Councillors, representatives of state agencies and the social partners. While input from industry and sector experts is highly valued the responsibility for the delivery of service should again be with the elected Councillors. It cost nearly €40 million to administer the City and County Enterprise Boards over the past three years. These savings could be used to help fund the merging of responsibilities and staff into the Local Government structure.

Ahem. So they're going to save money by cutting them out, then put the same money back into local government to run the same operation but hidden within the echelons of the mysterious county councils.

What's the point?

Then of course, with all independent (voluntary) non-political board members gotten rid of, it'll leave the "trusty" councillors to administer grant aid. Regardless of eligibility or ethics, I am sure. We already know that politicians and money DO NOT MIX so why rely on politicians to decide who is eligible for funding and who is not? What the hell do they know about running businesses?

For the record they also plan to get rid of LEADER &/or Partnership groups in the same breath (point 1.2.9) suggesting that their work is duplicated - but they don't clarify by who. Right. Say that to the countless number of businesses that have thrived on the support of the likes of LEADER groups who have thrice the budgets of CEB's.

What the frick are they thinking?

It's not money saving, it's moving the money around under another name. We've already had a huge fcukup doing this with the new name of the "fantastical" HSE when we all know that they're just the regional health boards under a different ridiculous guise.

For the love of the sungods, if you are going to do something radical do something good that makes sense and really saves money without robbing people of the supports they need to start, grow and develop businesses all over the country.

1 comment:

  1. Just seen this now MJ - FFS. Much as there are improvements that could be made to the CEB's do FG have any class of a clue just what this would do to enterprise support?

    will repost on my blog :-)