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KCC's aborted jobs plan cost £858,000

THE full cost of the county council’s aborted attempt to privatise some 800 jobs will be more than £850,000, it has emerged. The figure is more than double the amount KCC had estimated it had spent on assessing whether to press ahead with the ill-fated plan a little more than a month ago.

Conservative council leader Sandy Bruce-Lockhart has disclosed that the final bill for what was known as the “eBusiness project” would come in at £858,000. In September, KCC abandoned moves to privatise the jobs in its personnel, finance and IT departments and pulled the plug on talks with the private company Hyder, which had been expected to take on the multi-million pound contract

The figure covers the costs of consultants brought in to advise KCC on the viability of the privatisation plan; legal and auditor’s fees and the costs of the authority’s own team of officers who worked on the scheme. The amount was described as excessive by Liberal Democrat county councillor John Frisby, who tabled a question to the full council meeting asking for details of the costs.

He said: “I think it is deplorable and quite disgraceful. How many of our schools could we repaint with that kind of money? KCC made a mistake over this project and has refused to acknowledge it."

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