Following the announcement that Councillor Rod Bluh will be standing down as Leader of Swindon Borough Council at the April 11th Full Council Meeting, the Swindon Labour Group Leader and Leader of Swindon’s Opposition, Councillor Jim Grant, has made the following statement…
Following the announcement that Councillor Rod Bluh will be standing down as Leader of Swindon Borough Council at the April 11th Full Council Meeting, the Swindon Labour Group Leader and Leader of Swindon’s Opposition, Councillor Jim Grant, has made the following statement:
"While it is well known that Councillor Bluh and I have had our differences politically and I have at times questioned his judgement, he deserves credit for the hard work he has put in for Swindon. I think one positive legacy he can take away is the links the Council has made with other local public sector bodies, like Swindon’s Primary Care Trust, with the aim of developing a more joined-up public service for the people of Swindon. And coming out of the turbulent years of a hung-council, there has been more stable leadership in Swindon over recent years.
Sadly, his legacy of office will also be remembered as a time when Swindon has fallen behind economically compared to its competitor towns and cities. After the golden years of the 80’s and 90’s where Swindon was dubbed the fastest growing town in Western Europe, Swindon now is creating fewer jobs than its competitor towns and cities. As well as this, while Councillor Bluh has been in charge the Council has gone from having a treasury surplus, to being £90m in debt which has meant the Council has to spend millions and millions of pounds each year on debt charges.
Regarding Councillor Bluh’s successor, I think David Renard has the right qualifications and experience for the job, so he would be a serious contender. However it is a matter for the Conservative Group to determine who they will choose as their leader.
Finally, I would like to wish Councillor Bluh the best of luck in the future with his new challenges.”
Councillor Jim Grant
Labour Group Leader, Swindon Borough Council