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Danny Deflation

Council Spots An 18-month-old Kid Dropping A Sweet Wrapper

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This is a bit Daily Mail-ish, but it still shows how our hopeless local councils squander our money.

In a nutshell: 18-month-old girl unwraps a sweet; sweet wrapper blows out of open car window; Kirklees Council jobsworth spies the offending wrapper; council takes the nineteen-year-old driver of vehicle to Crown Court; Judge sees sense, embarrasses the council, describes the actions as a "grotesque" waste of taxpayers' dosh, and throws the case out.

In an even smaller nutshell: child drops wrapper and five people's annual council tax go down the U-bend.

It cost five thousand pounds for this pantomime, which could have increased to 10K had a jury been involved.

When the Tories talk about the much-needed trimming of public service finances, maybe they just mean stopping councils squandering their money like this.

I was driving to work yesterday and there was a man in a council jacket with a clipboard at the bottom of my road. This was 7.45ish. He was still there, in the same place with the same clipboard, and with the same jobsworth expression, when I arrived home at 5p.m. I just thought "why?".

How long before the expenses of local council employees are published? How long before fraud investigators are sent into every local council?

Judge Scott asked Kirklees Council’s prosecutor Austin Newman: “Can you explain to me why this charge was ever brought against this lady – she has dropped a single sweet wrapper.

“Is it controlled waste? I’ve looked it up and I don’t see how you could possibly argue that it was controlled waste.

“I cannot for the life of me see it’s appropriate.

“It’s the most inappropriate set of proceedings I’ve personally ever, ever seen and it’s a fantastic waste of community charge payers’ money.

“This was a grotesque misuse of the powers of the authorities to proceed on indictment for dropping a sweet wrapper.â€

Full story:

http://www.examiner.co.uk/news/local-west-...86081-23920179/

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When the Tories talk about the much-needed trimming of public service finances, maybe they just mean stopping councils squandering their money like this.

Tip of a truly enormous local government iceberg I'm afraid.

An iceberg that would make the one that sunk the Titanic look like a finely crushed ice-cube in a cup of McSlurry.

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Yes an enormous waste of public money.

But I have difficulty with the story as related by the adult in charge of the kid:

Give an 18 month old kid a sweet while driving? Presumably the kid was strapped in the back seat so how was this done safely?

A wrapped murray mint? How's an 18 month old suppossed to get te wrapper off without eating the wrapper, choking on the murray mint (whilst strapped in a horizontal position in accordance with laws on kiddie car seats?) How would adult in charge deal with the inevitable choking? Plus it must have been one huge open window for the wrapped to make it's way from where child is strapped in the baby bucket to the open window. Either that or we have a new candidate for the England cricket team.

So much that doesnt add up here, I suspect we are not getting the whole picture.

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I'm locuming for the NHS at the moment. I needed to write a letter to a GP in the same building. Ideally i'd do it on headed paper from my department. I typed the letter then asked a colleague if we have headed paper. There was none. I said oh well i'll just add the department to the top right of the page. Oh no i can't do that she said, then it wouldn't be a "proper letter". Of course it would i said (don't be so bloody stupid i thought). Oh i wouldn't do that she said. You have to print it off, fax it to the department head office, they'll retype it and print it on headed paper, put it in an envelope, put a stamp on it and post it (to someone about 20 meters from where i was sitting).

My gripe is that she couldn't see anything wrong with this. Of course i just ignored her, folded it, didn't use an envelope and walked the 20 meters.

On another point we are now having to use disposable metal instruments. We open a whole pack of them even if we only need one part of it and the whole lot gets thrown in the bin. About £5 a pack cost to the NHS. We used to spend a similar amount getting them sterilised locally but now we spend it in China and as far as i know the metal is not recycled. Other than that they are crap quality of course because they have to be cheap.

There are so many stupid policies in the NHS i am convinced that somewhere there is a room full of chimps with the sign "forward planning" on the door.

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While it might not have been appropriate to take the matter to court, I agree with Melchett that the story doesnt add up.

And I'm highly in favour of handing out stonking great big fines to people who litter. I'm sick of having to put up with people who treat the country like their own personal garbage can and I'm sick of having to pick their filth up for them. What the hell is wrong with people? Die scum!

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The council expected this to be dealt with in the magistrate's court because they expected Wilkinson to roll over and have her tummy tickled like a good little council-tax slave, pay the fine and be on her way.

Perhaps if the Council employees were made personally fiancially liable for the Court costs they might think twice about bringing spurious proceedings in the future.

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I'm locuming for the NHS at the moment. I needed to write a letter to a GP in the same building. Ideally i'd do it on headed paper from my department. I typed the letter then asked a colleague if we have headed paper. There was none. I said oh well i'll just add the department to the top right of the page. Oh no i can't do that she said, then it wouldn't be a "proper letter". Of course it would i said (don't be so bloody stupid i thought). Oh i wouldn't do that she said. You have to print it off, fax it to the department head office, they'll retype it and print it on headed paper, put it in an envelope, put a stamp on it and post it (to someone about 20 meters from where i was sitting).

My gripe is that she couldn't see anything wrong with this. Of course i just ignored her, folded it, didn't use an envelope and walked the 20 meters.

On another point we are now having to use disposable metal instruments. We open a whole pack of them even if we only need one part of it and the whole lot gets thrown in the bin. About £5 a pack cost to the NHS. We used to spend a similar amount getting them sterilised locally but now we spend it in China and as far as i know the metal is not recycled. Other than that they are crap quality of course because they have to be cheap.

There are so many stupid policies in the NHS i am convinced that somewhere there is a room full of chimps with the sign "forward planning" on the door.

The management in the NHS is full of idiots with no ideas or brains.

There was a report written I think by the BMA which said that the govt was just going to waste money with the budget increases because the NHS lacked the infrastructure to spend the money on improving health care. The money would just be wasted on management and salaries.

The NHS is full of box ticking management who spend all days making sure the boxes are ticked which means they've done a hard days work.

As for the original post it's just proves how stupid councils are with other peoples money but as Melchett said the whole story sounds like something is missing.

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Give an 18 month old kid a sweet while driving? Presumably the kid was strapped in the back seat so how was this done safely?

A wrapped murray mint? How's an 18 month old suppossed to get te wrapper off without eating the wrapper, choking on the murray mint (whilst strapped in a horizontal position in accordance with laws on kiddie car seats?) How would adult in charge deal with the inevitable choking? Plus it must have been one huge open window for the wrapped to make it's way from where child is strapped in the baby bucket to the open window. Either that or we have a new candidate for the England cricket team.

So much that doesnt add up here, I suspect we are not getting the whole picture.

Accoding to the story as recited by the Daily Wail: the child wasn't given a murray mint - she merely picked up a wrapper that had been discarded in the car.

I don't see any reason to not believe the driver's version of events. I would prefer to give my benefit of the doubt to the driver than to the council. But then, unlike local councils, I have a modicum of fairness and common sense.

To be honest, the version of events is neither here nor there. It is Kirklees Council's dealing of the issue that is significant. If Kirklees Council desperately wanted to make a point about not lobbing sweet wrappers out of car windows, then they could have simply written to the driver: "We saw what happened. We don't know how it happened, but please make sure it doesn't happen again or you could be liable to a small fine." All it would have cost the taxpayer is a sheet of paper and a stamp.

Instead, the council conducted an abuse of process - and betrayed local taxpayers - by allowing a minor incident to go to a crown court.

But then that's local authorities for you.

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The council expected this to be dealt with in the magistrate's court because they expected Wilkinson to roll over and have her tummy tickled like a good little council-tax slave, pay the fine and be on her way.

Perhaps if the Council employees were made personally fiancially liable for the Court costs they might think twice about bringing spurious proceedings in the future.

Well said Sir, that was exactly what they expected.

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Yes an enormous waste of public money.

But I have difficulty with the story as related by the adult in charge of the kid:

Give an 18 month old kid a sweet while driving? Presumably the kid was strapped in the back seat so how was this done safely?

A wrapped murray mint? How's an 18 month old suppossed to get te wrapper off without eating the wrapper, choking on the murray mint (whilst strapped in a horizontal position in accordance with laws on kiddie car seats?) How would adult in charge deal with the inevitable choking? Plus it must have been one huge open window for the wrapped to make it's way from where child is strapped in the baby bucket to the open window. Either that or we have a new candidate for the England cricket team.

So much that doesnt add up here, I suspect we are not getting the whole picture.

There are a lot of unanswered questions here. I think there should be a public enquiry.

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There are a lot of unanswered questions here. I think there should be a public enquiry.

Do you care, though? I cant say I really do. All I'm saying is no one comes out of this smelling of roses. Perhaps the council operative should have just shoved the rubbish back through their car window or letter box with an 'Oi! Chav! No!' and been done with it?

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There are a lot of unanswered questions here. I think there should be a public enquiry.

Excellent idea, it would help create some more jobs and help with unemployment. It could last years.

Do you care, though? I cant say I really do. All I'm saying is no one comes out of this smelling of roses. Perhaps the council operative should have just shoved the rubbish back through their car window or letter box with an 'Oi! Chav! No!' and been done with it?

Another good idea, I think this has potential.

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Do you care, though? I cant say I really do. All I'm saying is no one comes out of this smelling of roses. Perhaps the council operative should have just shoved the rubbish back through their car window or letter box with an 'Oi! Chav! No!' and been done with it?

I think you missed my irony. :P

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