Cornwall Council services deal 'in tatters'
Privatisation plans for Cornwall Council services are in tatters after one of the two prospective companies pulled out of the deal.
The shared services scheme, which has already cost former leader Alec Robertson his job and sparked several councillors to resign from the cabinet, is now in serious doubt.
US multinational giant CSC quit the race leaving only BT in the running to secure the lucrative contract, the council revealed yesterday.
Deputy leader Neil Burden, who lost a vote to become leader by three votes, said the company "no longer wants to engage" as a direct result of the dramatic public sacking of Mr Robertson.
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Other senior members of the council have suggested that the company was a long way behind BT and "nowhere near" likely to become the chosen bidder. The full council will discuss the plans next week, after a motion was forced by a petition of more than 5,000 signatures.
New leader Jim Currie is now building bridges with senior councillors.
He is beginning to assemble his new cabinet in the wake of four resignations at a "bizarre" emergency session at County Hall on Tuesday at which Councillor Robertson was voted out.
Jeremy Rowe, leader of the Liberal Democrat group, said the proceedings had at times been "a farce" but felt the public row had reconnected many people with politics and "reinforced the democratic will".
Mr Rowe added that the full council meeting on October 25 would give the new cabinet "a steer" on the plans which they would be "foolish" to ignore.