1.9M loss by Cambridgeshire Construction

County Councillor Chris Bradford (LibDem) explained the history of this: (Cambridge Evening News 4-Apr-1996)
1991/2, Council under Conservative control
The Transport Direct Labour Organisation made a loss of 1.4M. Action was taken to set up systems to prevent unidentified loss.
1992/3, Council under Conservative control
A further loss, not detected
Next two years, Council under Lab/LibDem control
Further losses, not detected during internal and external audits
December 1995, DLO now a private company
Losses detected; Price Waterhouse called in by Council to investigate and duly discover the scale of losses and the causes. Their report goes to the Chief Executive.

The Chief Executive, Gordon Lister, explains in a letter to CEN (16-Apr) that the Price Waterhouse report & findings were discussed at the Policy Committee on 5-Mar and a supplementary report on personnel implications was discussed with the three political group leaders and implemented. The Quality Audit Select Panel has discussed the report & implications and recommended new procedures.

See also 1.9M lost by council organisation; 11-Mar-1996 at East Cambridgeshire Online News.

The Director of Transport, Mike Sharpe, left when his fixed-term contract ended in October 1996. There is no official suggestion there is any link - rather it is said that, due to restructuring, the job no longer existed and he decided not to apply for a new job. He chaired the board of six which ran the organisation.

Meanwhile there are calls for sackings and investigations, recriminations between the polical parties and plenty of letters in the Cambridge Evening News. And The Great Switch-Off to save 1.8M.

The Price Waterhouse report on the matter commented that the district auditor had missed the losses and the Audit Commission says its satisfied that there were no faults within the audit in the previous years. (CEN 28-Sep-1996)

See also: County Council Budget 1996.

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