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SALFORD COUNCIL SPENDS ALMOST £10,000 FILMING CUTS MEETINGS
 

Star date: 26th February 2015

SALFORD COUNCIL BEN HUR FILM BUDGET TO SCREEN CUTS

Salford Council spent £2,202.50 filming yesterday's cuts meeting, which included £202.50 for `travel and accommodation' for company Public-i to get to Salford (home of MediaCityUK) to stream the meeting.

Freedom of Information responses show that the Council has commissioned three webcasts from Public-i since December at a cost of £6,607.50, plus £3,000 from Digital Tree Media for screening two previous meetings – which all centred around cuts to services for vulnerable people in Salford.

Full details here...


Salford Council Meeting Screened
click image to enlarge

Details provided after Freedom of Information requests show that Salford City Council has spent almost £10,000 screening council meetings, which largely centred around cuts to vital public services for the city's vulnerable people.

Salford Council won a Mary Burns `Ben Hur' Award in December, after spending £3,000 with Digital Tree Media for streaming two council meetings in October and November, at a cost of £1,500 each (see previous Salford Star article – click here).

Now, the budget for the filming has dramatically increased to £2,000 per meeting after a company called Public-i was commissioned in December. Incredibly, given that Salford is the home of MediaCityUK, Public-i is based in Hove, East Sussex, and the Council is paying £202.50 per time for `travel and accommodation' so its techie can screen the meeting.

Public-i was contracted to screen three meetings. The resident who put in the Freedom of Information request asked whether Salford Council considered the costs being spent on streaming as cost effective and value for money. He also asked the Council to provide a list of alternative services that were looked at along with prices...

Salford Council responded: "The Council is evaluating the impact of webcasting its meetings against the expenditure incurred, so as to ensure there is value for money. The evaluation is not complete at this time."


* The Salford Star spent £72 on a new tripod in order to livestream yesterday's Council meeting for free. Unfortunately the Council's Wi-Fi was so weak in the `super connected city' that we couldn't broadcast...

* For full details of yesterday's Council meeting - click here

Paul wrote
at 8:39:46 AM on Friday, March 6, 2015
Just came across this site on the web. Could you say if/ or where, the video of the council meetings are available to the general public... and if they are not... what's the point of spending money on producing them?
 
wrote
at 6:24:50 AM on Friday, February 27, 2015
Its a shame the live stream still isn't sorted, the meeting has evolved into an excellent comedy show and/or Greek tragedy. At one stage I began to imagine that Cllr Karen Garridos microphone had been rigged, the sound quality was so bad when she spoke. However the televised meetings do serve to highlight an insight into the bumptious character and childishness of some of our councillors. The happy clappy applause is funny if not a little infantile, the handwringing and breast clenching is like something out of a Victorian melodrama, all it needs if for someone to take their hankie out and sweep it across their brow....and that's between madam chair being unable to turn her own mic on and off without the help of the people sitting either side of her. Funny? Not! Sad? Yes, yes, yes. Roll on the next one
 
wrote
at 10:57:45 PM on Thursday, February 26, 2015
sad considering they debated with me for two months doing a filming project with with service users... at a fraction of the cost of this. They shook hands on a deal, and then decided to back out.
 
Salford Star wrote
at 10:57:35 PM on Thursday, February 26, 2015
See Pamela Welsh's comment below - of course Council meetings should be televised, we campaigned for this and are attempting to livestream them ourselves, but think you're missing the point of the article. Firstly it's about the Ben Hur cost, and bringing a company into Salford from elsewhere, when surely there's a community group in this `Media City' that could do the job - and for a lot less than £2k a day! Secondly and unfortunately - the fact that the meetings are being screened, far from re-connecting councillors with the electorate, has just made our Mayor try to pack the public gallery out with his own supporters to make him look better. It's become an ugly sideshow for the cameras. For God's sake, Labour councillors and Party members clapping speeches about cuts to services for vulnerable people? Stalin would indeed be proud!
 
Pamela Welsh wrote
at 10:43:27 PM on Thursday, February 26, 2015
Hi Stephen. I'm not sure what I think about this, I'm sort of on the fence. I think there's a real democratic deficit in Salford at the minute and there has been for years. The level of disconnect between the voters and the politicians is something that I find really really worrying. I've documented these worries to members of the council many many times. I think I've been a bit of a thorn in their side.I've been arguing for years and years that council meetings should be held in the evenings so that more people can attend. Those of us who work full-time can't just pop out at 9.30am and sit there for five hours while councillors of all shades shout at each other. It's quite childish and off-putting. However, I actually think it's worth defending this idea - I know it's a lot of money and that money may well be better spent elsewhere. But I think it's a really good think to try to reconnect the electorate back to the councillors who represent them. I think it might give councillors the kick up the backside that some of them need. I take the point that it's a lot of money though.
 
sue m memory wrote
at 10:43:20 PM on Thursday, February 26, 2015
they are just a load of evil people they do not give a dam about the people of this city whom they claim to support as long as they are ok they are nice to your face saying they will help yeah to stab you in the back there is more of us than them its time the people stand up and say no more mr scrooge we will not let you wipe your feet on us no more you pure evil man this shower of head cases are making a lot of people ill
 
Chaz wrote
at 12:05:03 PM on Thursday, February 26, 2015
The end of Rome would have been similar to this
 
Salford007 wrote
at 12:04:59 PM on Thursday, February 26, 2015
This Council are Just Barmy, I see there are no cuts to this idiot of a mayor and his deputy's expenses/ the way they run this council a year 3 primary school class could run it better, Labour will lose seats in future, they've destroyed this once great city, they've ripped it down brick by brick and lined their own fecking pockets, and told the rest of us to stick it, one thing I can say with regards to the Children's holiday camp is we Run this not you who ran it to the ground, I call that people Power, so to Salford Council, stick it up your arse.
 
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