Cart before the horse?

26 Jan

EDDC justifies adding £200,000 each year for the next 2 years to its budget for “relocation expenditure” in the following article in the Sidmouth Herald:

http://www.sidmouthherald.co.uk/news/news/creative_accouting_accusation_in_relocation_budget_1_3226631

Two sentences stand out:

1.  Chief executive Mark Williams said there was ‘nothing sinister’ about budgeting for the relocation in this way, and the authority will be seeking advice from experts on how to proceed.

2.  A council spokesman explained that the amount is an ‘educated guess’, included to cover the costs of the initial project, should a site be approved.

Questions:  how can you set a figure if you have not yet had advice from experts?  And how much is that advice going to cost?  Is that included in the £400,000 – if not, how much is it expected to be?

Of course, no-one will ever know the cost of anything at EDDC as, unlike many other councils, they do not apportion officer time to each budget head.

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