Move to axe jobs called in by Tories

Blackpool Council leader Simon Blackburn
Blackpool Council leader Simon Blackburn
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A MOVE to axe five senior town hall jobs is being challenged by opposition councillors.

Coun Tony Williams, Conservative group deputy leader on Blackpool Council, has called in the decision made earlier this month by the executive.

It means the move, which will save £1.8m over the next four years and see managers including tourism boss Helen France made redundant, must go back before a council committee on Monday.

Coun Williams said: “In principle I agree with and welcome the review and the need to reconsider some senior positions.

“However I believe the council needs to be more supportive in regard to appointing or re-defining an identifiable tourism chief which could be someone from the Visit Blackpool team at a similar salary to their current level.

“Also to clearly display an intention to capture new industries and business to the town other than retail and provide much-needed jobs.”

But council leader Coun Simon Blackburn said the new framework would continue to support tourism.

He said: “In the current economic climate, the council serves its citizens, its businesses, and the tourism sector best by ensuring every penny possible goes into delivering front line services.

“The Labour Council has a very clear mandate to cut the costs of senior management.

“We are delivering on that pledge, and are saving, even after redundancy costs, more than £1.8m over the next four years. Coun Williams demonstrates his complete lack of empathy with the people of Blackpool in seeking to stop us carrying out our very clear manifesto commitments.

“Tourism and the local economy is not well served by spending ever more money on senior salaries.”