Why are FMDFM not ready to decide on cuts?

David Cameron has met leaders of all three devo areas at No 10 and told them to start preparing for cuts.  Alex Salmond has decided to defer this year’s £332 million cuts for Scotland although a further £1.3 billion are expected next year, reports the Times. By contrast Peter Robinson said they were still waiting on the Treasury to provide details of the breakdown in the cuts between capital and resource expenditure.

“We are unable to take our decisions as to whether we defer our cuts until the following financial year until we get that information, so we need to improve the consultation that there is between the Treasury and the devolved regions.”

Robinson has a fair point that Whitehall’s links with the devolved areas have been poor ; it’s hoped that the joint ministerial committee will strengthen them.  Even so, how come come Salmond knows enough and Robinson doesn’t? Martin McGuinness would be unwise to put much faith in lowering corporation tax.  In any case, it’s no substitute for cuts. Does his slighting talk  about a ” cabinet of millionaires” suggest that SF may be preparing to cast themselves as the forlorn hope  in  a populist campaign against them?  Robinson will know that’s a mug’s game.  Is the Executive deadlocked over what to do?

  • Cynic

    Deadlocked? Never!!! Surely not

    Well they could save us all a lot of time and money and go home in that case because cuts there must be.

  • Seems like it might be an intreresting comment; then it all comes back to Nothern Ireland.

    Is theer any hope of breaking out from the parochial blinkers?

    Doesn’t mean there aren’t real events happening in NI. Just how it’s all got to refer back, maybe in an empty way?

  • Munsterview

    The North decisivly rejected Camron and his politics in the last election. Hed is dealing with a lame duck Prime Minister that trenchantly opposed the political party allied to his own, one who may not be in power following the next election.

    Why should Cameron do the Six-Counties any favours ? There may not be real Peace in the North, but Peace for Cameron and his kind in Ireland never meant peace with justice, just an absence of war !

    HMG now have just that, what ‘activity’ is left is well below the infamous’ acceptable level of violence’ of old, in fact it is probably just enough to provide a useful training ground for blooding spooks.

  • jim

    it takes time for sf to take advice from civil servants most of these mlas dont understand goverment.mcguinness left school at 15 ffs

  • The Raven

    “….just enough to provide a useful training ground for blooding spooks” yawn yawn burble burble its-all-the-Brits-fault MI5-was-behind-it shooter-on-the-grassy-knoll yada yada

  • “Is the Executive deadlocked over what to do?”

    Not deadlocked, Brian, ….. just hopelessly intellectually bankrupt. And what of their collective wisdom on the growing of the private sector? Do they have any plans or even ideas about how that is to be achieved or are they only occupying space in Stormont to beg borrow and steal public funds and to server nothing new?

    Or are they waiting/expecting the private sector to ride in to their rescue, which would out them as being rather more the parasitic overpaid servant than leading grand master planner.

    And if one were such a private sector champion, whom would one approach in the Legislative Assembly? Who plays at being the Organ Grinder for a chat with monkeys is a waste of everyone’s valuable time. And yes, that is an earnest question which deserves an honest answer and when aired here will surely find its way quickly to wherever it needs to be for answering.

    Thanks for the service, Slugger. There are interesting times ahead for all who are into rapid progress. And the rest will just enjoy the dividends.

  • DC

    Is this Peter Robinson’s ‘Brave New World’ that he once wrote about (strangely enough I couldn’t find the article online to link it – News Letter it was in)?

    Ah well.

  • Jimmy Mack

    we need to scrap manadatory coalition, this is at the center of the problems at Stormont – we have 4 parties who cant agree on a number of issues

    Either voluntary coaliton or direct rule

  • Neil

    Why are FMDFM not ready to decide on cuts?

    Because there are no populist cuts. The idea that they might have to do something unpopular and that would cost them votes is not something they’re ready to countenance. That’s why everyone, including the rich, still gets free water and prescriptions. Why would those on salaries of, say, >50k per year want to pay for water when they have the muppets dishing it out for nothing.

  • Glencoppagagh

    ‘The North decisivly rejected Camron and his politics in the last election’

    Well of course it would since it doesn’t pay for what it gets. Any chance of a dig-out from Dublin?

  • Glencoppagagh

    Robinson mentioned the ring-fencing of health and education as causing a particular difficulty for NI but I don’t think that the devolved governments are bound to Cameron’s pledges.
    Lots of scope for cutting health and education in NI through pay reductions.

  • daisy

    Merge some of the departments (get rid of DCAL completely).
    Introduce water charges.
    Re-introduce prescription charges (why were they scrapped in the first place?).
    Get rid of the multiple layers of civil service middle management.

    That will do for starters. Of course, none of the above will be done any time soon because there are elections coming up next year.

  • joeCanuck

    Eamonn Maille twitted a similar type of thought a short while ago. He asked, “What is going on?”.
    The answer to that is the usual: Nothing. Up on the hill,they are all a bunch of procrastinators. Afraid to make any decision in case someone, like Jim Allister, criticizes it. Either that or they are just incompetent.

  • Munsterview

    Certainly, by all means; will you accept some politicians, well a lot actually, on a free transfer basis ?

  • Munsterview

    Glasgow is not renowned as being one of the worlds most peaceful cities. Other Scottish cities, many of the towns and rural communities are remote and well scattered, yet it can provide a police service at one eight of the per capita cost of the Six-Counties.

    Wales also has to service many mountain and valley communities, yet it can provide a police service at one-twenty-fifth the per capita cost of the Six-Counties.

    It should be noted also that the demands on both of these services come from 100% of the community. In the Six-Counties somewhere between one-third and one half of the population do not use or call on the services of the Police, which significantly and adversely increase the multiples once factored in.

    How come this under used service still costs eight times more than Scotland and twenty five times more than Wales to run where there is almost a 100% community use of the Police services ? ( COINS figures)

    There is something very, very wrong here !

  • ForkHandles

    “We are unable to take our decisions as to whether we defer our cuts until the following financial year until we get that information, so we need to improve the consultation that there is between the Treasury and the devolved regions.”

    Nothing says “Im useless” louder than saying you have been prevented from doing your work because someone else hasnt provided you with a response to a request. The truely useless always bat responsibility away from themselves with this tactic.

    So are the FMs going to put forward their plan for improving the consultation process, then implement the plan so that there is a proper consultation process so they can get their info on time and proceed with making decisions? Na…..