! This post hasn't been updated in over a year. A lot can change in a year including my opinion and the amount of naughty words I use. There's a good chance that there's something in what's written below that someone will find objectionable. That's fine, if I tried to please everybody all of the time then I'd be a Lib Dem (remember them?) and I'm certainly not one of those. The point is, I'm not the kind of person to try and alter history in case I said something in the past that someone can use against me in the future but just remember that the person I was then isn't the person I am now nor the person I'll be in a year's time.


For immediate release

Advantage West Midlands (AWM), the unelected Regional Development Agency for the West Midlands, has announced its budget for the financial year 2007-08.  The taxpayer will give this unelected, underperforming quango £296m for the financial year.

AWM have just given jobs to two “local” entrepreneurs – Jas Bains and Angela Maxwell – who will be paid £8,371 of taxpayers’ money for working two days per month. [1] When the average full time weekly wage for an adult in the West Midlands is £393.60, where is the justice in an unelected quango paying £350 per day to someone who is supposed to be a successful entrepreneur?  Hopefully they will prove to have more loyalty to the people they have been appointed to represent than John Crabtree OBE, the Chairman of Birmingham Chamber of Commerce and a member of the board of AWM, who was criticised on Tuesday for organising a seminar to help local businesses relocate abroad. [2]

Just a few days ago, the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) has release half-yearly figures for performance against six targets that it has set Advantage West Midlands.  If they continue to perform at the same level, they will exceed one maximum target, achieve one minimum target and miss four minimum targets – one of them by a massive 95%.  If they are performing this poorly, can they really be trusted with £296m of our money? [3]

The West Midlands NO! Campaign is committed to exposing the waste, incompetence and misuse of public money by these unelected, undemocratic, unwanted regional quangos and we won’t stop until every last one has been disbanded and power is firmly back in the hands of those we have elected to wield it.

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