secretary@essexlibdems.org.uk
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Essex Education Services to be privatised – review blocked

June 19, 2018 3:51 PM
Originally published by Chelmsford Liberal Democrats
School signEssex Education Services (EES) will now be sold to the private sector, following a vote at Essex County Council (ECC). At the People and Families Scrutiny Committee, a call by the Liberal Democrats to postpone the sale was rejected by 7 votes to 4.
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The hope had been that the decision was referred back to the Cabinet Member for further consideration, but even this minimal requirement was rejected.
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Cllr John Baker (Lib Dem, Colchester) instigated the 'Call-In' and made a robust case for keeping the service in house. He expressed grave concerns at the loss of democratic accountability if the service is sold.
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Cllr Baker said, "Selling EES to a private company will undermine democratic accountability over the education service in Essex and will not be in the best interests of the children and families it is meant to serve."
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Cllr Jude Deakin (Lib Dem, Chelmsford) supported the Call-In and made the point that EES made a large surplus of some £4 Million per year, to help Essex taxpayers, which would be lost if sold to the private sector.
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Cllr Deakin also stated that, while the Conservative council was failing to invest in the service, they were happy to spend £27 Million buying property outside of Essex.
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PWC, the organisation that recommended that ECC sell off the service, has recently been fined the huge amount of £6.5 million and a partner banned from the profession for 15 years - who signed off the BHS accounts as a going concern, just days before it was sold for £1.