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Bristol Council spending £58,000 a year guarding empty flats.

Lib Dem-run Bristol City Council is spending £58,000 on guarding a block of 130 flats - of which only 12 are occupied. Bristol has 365 empty Council homes the highest in the south west so this story is evidently part of a wider pattern of waste and mismanagement.

There has been dithering for two years over the future of the Torpoint and Kinswear flats. The Lib Dems took over the Council last year and say they are "trying to speed things up." Not with much sign of success. The latest idea is to have a consultation exercise to "ask local people what they would like." Meanwhile according to Shelter there are 224 households in Bristol placed by the Council in temporary accommodation. How many families are stuck in hostels or bed and breakfast hotels while the Lib Dem Council has a think about getting round to a consultation exercise and the years roll by? In any case the Lib Dems have form on ignoring consultation exercises even when they get round to holding them.

Bristol is putting up it's Council Tax by 2% in the coming year to £1,339 for Band D. A third of the seats are up for election this year - last time the Conservatives gained four seats. In the General Election the Conservatives have two target seats (from Labour) - Bristol North West and Bristol East.

Under Labour control, Bristol was a regular feature in the Non-Job of the Week slot. Entries included Sex Work Strategy Co-ordinator (£27,594-£29,562.) Also a Food Policy Officer (£30,598-£33,291.) and a Health Walks Co-ordinator. While a boys club was ordered to channge its "discriminatory" name.

Last September it was reported that the Council spent £100,000 on "rebranding" for a local museum - an exercise which came up with the idea of restoring its original name.


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