Brent council spending in spotlight

Brent council spending in spotlight

Brent council spent over £1.2m on consultants in March, the same month that it published its report recommending the closure of six libraries, aimed at saving £1m over two years.

Local library campaigner Samantha Warrington termed the spending "yet more evidence of shocking waste and incompetence" by the council. She told the Harrow Observer: "Officials are paying more than £1 million a month to consultants while cutting frontline services such as libraries."

The council said it was using consultancy to save money in the long term as part of a scheme termed the One Council Programme. A spokeswoman said: "More than half the quoted figure is for construction projects that the council is progressing, while another set of payments are to social care providers. Around £300,000 is for what is generally termed consultancy. As always, with the One Council Programme we employ consultants with specialisms only to help us save money."

Brent library campaigners are currently awaiting the judge's verdict in a judicial review of the council's plans for its library service.