Gambling loss

PUBLISHED: 10:26 29 January 2009 | UPDATED: 13:54 06 May 2010

SIR, — Herts County Council seem to be brushing aside the loss of £28m with words such as reviewed procedures and less likely to happen in the future (Herts Advertiser, January 22). How can it possibly be that so much money has been lost and yet no-on

SIR, - Herts County Council seem to be brushing aside the loss of £28m with words such as "reviewed procedures" and "less likely to happen in the future" (Herts Advertiser, January 22). How can it possibly be that so much money has been lost and yet no-one is accountable for it? It seems that even though written procedures were not followed, nobody will lose their job over the fiasco.

I would like to know that if there is so much money knocking around that £28m can be written off without affecting services, then why are we paying more and more council tax every year? If the loss equates to eight per cent of the annual budget, then surely the annual council tax bill can be reduced by at least eight per cent.

It would appear that residents of Herts might be better at looking after their money than the council is in any case. I would never consider investing my money outside this country, let alone outside the EU. This may be over-cautious but any gambler will tell you that the higher the reward, the higher the risk of losing everything. Herts County Council, among others, have played the roulette wheel and lost. They then try to play down the whole sorry episode and even claim that because other councils played too, then they are not to be blamed. That is complete rubbish. Just because greed is endemic in the councils and Central Government, it does not give the green light to gamble with taxpayers' money.

If we tried to claim that we could not pay council tax this year because we lost our money with Icelandic banks, Bernard Madoff or even the local bookmaker, I am sure Herts County Council would not accept these excuses, and neither should we accept theirs.

R. SMITH,

Fellowes Lane, Colney Heath.


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