Our budget session on Monday was as expected mostly an announcements of efficiencies and reduced services, so it was a pleasant surprise to hear that Ward Working funds would be doubled to £40,000 per ward. This scheme is very popular with councillors as it enables them to work with residents to make small improvements in the wards. So it was with some surprise that the Lib Dem budget proposals suggested scrapping the scheme entirely. Clearly the group had changed their minds or had forgotten this positive reference in their 2006 election manifesto, when the scheme was known as Neighbourhood Working :
"We have successfully rolled out the Neighbourhood Working scheme, supporting 155 local projects for residents. Our scheme has allowed local councillors to invest £1.5 million in a wide range of local projects such as CCTV, sports and leisure provision for local youth groups, redevelopment of library gardens, personal alarms for vulnerable residents and creative writing courses."