That tireless worker in the public interest, Merchant Venturer John Savage – a board member of the SWRDA – told us earlier this week in the Evening Cancer after the cancellation of the arena project:
in the end, we are in no doubt that an £86 million bill to be footed by you, the readers of this paper, among others, is unacceptable.
However, it seems that Savage neglected to tell us what he and his fellow board members at the SWRDA think is an entirely acceptable use of public funds.
Perusing through the SWRDA’s last annual report, 2006 – 2007, we find a section headed ‘Related Party Transactions’. And what might this be? Why it’s only a list of payments from our friendly local RDA to organisations in which board members of the SWRDA have a direct personal interest.
And how much public money have this little gang been awarding themselves then? Last year the figure was over . . . Wait for it . . . £20m!!!
Yes, these selfless workers on our behalf who called a halt to the arena because the costs were unacceptable are filling their own boots with public cash to the tune of 20 million quid every bloody year!
This means that over 10% of the SWRDA’s budget is currently going directly to board members’ personal organisations. And this figure will be going up next year when Savage and Colin Skellett’s £8m a year Northern Arc scam is factored in. Then one-sixth of the SWRDA’s entire budget will be going direct to board members.
At least we now know why they can’t afford an arena. It’s obviously not a board members’ personal pet project and none of the money would end up in their organisation.
You may also be pleased to hear that the multi-millionaire membership of the SWRDA board aren’t working for nothing. For their two whole days of work a month they are being paid the grand total of £8,268 a year. Pro rata that’s equivalent to around £90k a year.
They’re all heart ain’t they?