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Surely it would have been a more humane solution only to cut pay levels for new employees and perhaps those employed after pay cuts were first mooted.

 

this had been thought about but quickly dissmissed due to the fact ( if im not mistaken ) breaking equal right laws.

 

having said that now that some of have had to analys things it would appear there are huge discrepancies between people doing very similar jobs.. so it would appear equal rights and equality have gone out the window anyway.. but further investigation is needed.

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I think everything should be left as it is, as the people were not forced to take the jobs in the first place, if folk are doing a job they must be happy with the pay or would do somthing else. All these changes are not somthing that the workers have been calling for and seems a stupid answer to a problem most people would say did not exist.

 

One thing that does seem daft though is council workers getting paid for 37hrs but only working 34hrs, I have no idea how this ever came about but i think it should be scrapped and they get paid for the hours they work.

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"Our concern is retaining jobs and maintaining services at the level people in Shetland have enjoyed now for quite a long time. Meeting with conveners from Aberdeenshire and Moray they are looking at substantial job cuts, and that's something I am personally not prepared to look at."

 

May be this is my usual sceptical self.. but this is a comment made with either ignorance or tongue in cheek.. they are worried about having to make job cuts but yet they make pay offers that will almost certainly force people to look for work else where.. again more likely this could involve people moving South. So in a round about way they have achieved job cuts by hiding it in this job evaluation. and got away with having to pay redundancy payments.

 

So what ever way you look at it the economy in Shetland will take a nose dive. weather it be people not being able to spend less in local shops or the fact that people move south completely to look for better paid jobs.

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So what ever way you look at it the economy in Shetland will take a nose dive. weather it be people not being able to spend less in local shops or the fact that people move south completely to look for better paid jobs.

 

 

I think the economy is far too reliant on the SIC already, If we want the good life here to carry on into the future years, we need to be creating jobs outwith the public sector that produce wealth, not consume it. Its about time the council got chopped down to size a bit, but I think they have to go about it the correct way to maintain a good service, Keep the manual workers and reduce the pen pushers through cutting out all unnecessary bureaucracy. We need to elect people to run the SIC who are frugal and have spade loads of common sense, people who actually care about the future of our economy and services.

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So what ever way you look at it the economy in Shetland will take a nose dive. weather it be people not being able to spend less in local shops or the fact that people move south completely to look for better paid jobs.

 

 

I think the economy is far too reliant on the SIC already, If we want the good life here to carry on into the future years, we need to be creating jobs outwith the public sector that produce wealth, not consume it. Its about time the council got chopped down to size a bit, but I think they have to go about it the correct way to maintain a good service, Keep the manual workers and reduce the pen pushers through cutting out all unnecessary bureaucracy. We need to elect people to run the SIC who are frugal and have spade loads of common sense, people who actually care about the future of our economy and services.

 

Well said!....I couldn't agree more.

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I think the economy is far too reliant on the SIC already, If we want the good life here to carry on into the future years, we need to be creating jobs outwith the public sector that produce wealth, not consume it. Its about time the council got chopped down to size a bit, but I think they have to go about it the correct way to maintain a good service, Keep the manual workers and reduce the pen pushers through cutting out all unnecessary bureaucracy. We need to elect people to run the SIC who are frugal and have spade loads of common sense, people who actually care about the future of our economy and services.

 

Well, yes and no. Don't forget that the SIC budget is based on actual expenditure. Chopping jobs would simply result in a loss of central funding asociated with those posts with the result that those wages would be lost to the community at large along with - very probably - the previous incumbents of those positions. Wages is all revenue expenditure and all, ultimately paid for by Edinburgh.

 

The notion that throwing out a pile of well paid, comfortable jobs would actively boost employment creation in the private sector is somewhat wistful to say the least. Choppng the council down to size as you put it, would simply lead to a mass exodus of workers and closure of businesses that depend on their salaries.

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I think the economy is far too reliant on the SIC already, If we want the good life here to carry on into the future years, we need to be creating jobs outwith the public sector that produce wealth, not consume it. Its about time the council got chopped down to size a bit, but I think they have to go about it the correct way to maintain a good service, Keep the manual workers and reduce the pen pushers through cutting out all unnecessary bureaucracy. We need to elect people to run the SIC who are frugal and have spade loads of common sense, people who actually care about the future of our economy and services.

 

Well, yes and no. Don't forget that the SIC budget is based on actual expenditure. Chopping jobs would simply result in a loss of central funding asociated with those posts with the result that those wages would be lost to the community at large along with - very probably - the previous incumbents of those positions. Wages is all revenue expenditure and all, ultimately paid for by Edinburgh.

 

The notion that throwing out a pile of well paid, comfortable jobs would actively boost employment creation in the private sector is somewhat wistful to say the least. Choppng the council down to size as you put it, would simply lead to a mass exodus of workers and closure of businesses that depend on their salaries.

 

If the jobs in question are un-necessary, ie the same level of service can still be delivered without them, where's the problem? Why "waste" taxpayers money needlessly, it may come from Edinburgh, but it ultimately comes out of our pockets as much as everyone else's.

 

What you're describing is an artificially inflated economy, which is fine for as long as the purse financing it keeps producing the goods to maintain it, but can Edinburgh be trusted to keep on doing that indefinitely, I certainly don't trust them to do so. Is it not better that we trim the fat on our own terms in our own time to the point that the local public purse spend is justifiable, and hopefully still retain a stable, albeit trimmed local economy. Than have such trimming forced upon us at a time and in whatever way others see fit to do so, with whatever knock on effects that has on the local economy.

 

Some may say we should be grateful Edinburgh is so generous, and scoop up as much as we possibly can while we can, and they're entitled to their opinion, however the concept of such makes me feel very uncomfortable. Whenever the time comes, as it surely will, that Edinburgh has to tighten it's belt, if we can fully justify how we spend every penny we receive from them, we might just have as good a chance as the rest of Scotland at getting a resonable slice of the funding cake therafter as well. However if we are seen as carrying dead wood we in all probability will be rubber stamped by some civil servant as "excessive and wasteful" and have a fight on our hands to get even basic adequate funding out of Edinburgh for some time thereafter.

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I think all council employees that have had there wage cut should go to the doctors and get singed off for 6 months with depression.. I suggest starting about May till October ( no point being off in turdty weather just makes you more depressed ) then take 4 weeks holiday and then get signed off for another 6 months.

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If the jobs in question are un-necessary, ie the same level of service can still be delivered without them, where's the problem? Why "waste" taxpayers money needlessly, it may come from Edinburgh, but it ultimately comes out of our pockets as much as everyone else's.

 

What you're describing is an artificially inflated economy, which is fine for as long as the purse financing it keeps producing the goods to maintain it, but can Edinburgh be trusted to keep on doing that indefinitely, I certainly don't trust them to do so. Is it not better that we trim the fat on our own terms in our own time to the point that the local public purse spend is justifiable, and hopefully still retain a stable, albeit trimmed local economy. Than have such trimming forced upon us at a time and in whatever way others see fit to do so, with whatever knock on effects that has on the local economy.

 

Some may say we should be grateful Edinburgh is so generous, and scoop up as much as we possibly can while we can, and they're entitled to their opinion, however the concept of such makes me feel very uncomfortable. Whenever the time comes, as it surely will, that Edinburgh has to tighten it's belt, if we can fully justify how we spend every penny we receive from them, we might just have as good a chance as the rest of Scotland at getting a resonable slice of the funding cake therafter as well. However if we are seen as carrying dead wood we in all probability will be rubber stamped by some civil servant as "excessive and wasteful" and have a fight on our hands to get even basic adequate funding out of Edinburgh for some time thereafter.

 

True, again, up to a point. Having worked for a couple of Scottish mainland local authorities - both in desperately deprived areas, I'd have to say that the 'excessive and wasteful' practices you allude to are fairly universal. I'm not disputing that practically every scottish local authority could trim the fat and shed workers but it's not peculiar to Shetland and its not necessarily desirable.

 

Also Edinburgh doesn't just hand out taxpayers cash to fund jobs on the whim of each local authority. In the case of the statutory services they will stipulate, for example, the ratio of educational advisors to teachers. Reducing their number would impact directly on front line services as you'd have to scale back the entire service to maintain an appropriate ratio. I'm fairly sure this would apply to other services. The amount of scrambled egg wearers at Sella Ness is, again, not a mere indulgence on the part of the Town Hall or Edinburgh, but a reflection of MCA requirements. (up to a point, at least)

 

I suppose the point I'm making is, yes you're right, it is an artificially inflated economy, but its also one that's damnably difficult to tinker with. The 'throw out the pen pushers' refrain is well worn but it betrays a poor understanding of both local authority staffing structures and the islands economy.

 

Which brings me to my second point. Reducing SIC employment in itself will not actively benefit the economy. The budget for jobs that many regard as dead wood might very well be delivered as a result of some political caprice but its still real money. Edinburgh couldn't substantially alter the awards formula without addressing the other islands authorities and it'll be a long time before Scottish Labour even think of mucking about with the Western Isles money.

 

Besides which, can you really see redundant council managers running marginal small businesses rather than taking the road south? Maybe one or two, but I wouldn't like to try getting a berth on the Nort' Boat in the months following any mass lay offs.

 

Which might make me sound like I've adopted a 'hit'll see me oot' view of taxpayers money. Far from it. In an ideal world, you'd have a fairly small public sector taking care of health, education and infrastructure and a booming, wealth producing, entepreneurial economy. But where's that going to come from?

 

There's no primary production left as such in the UK - Shetland with fish catching/farming probably exceeds the national average in that regard already. Manufacturing? Forget it. Even if you had the best product in the world you'd be a damn fool for not building it in China. Renewables? Yes, some jobs there but not that many. Financial Services is what's keeping most large municipalities in mainland Scotland in the black after their shipyards shut. Is that going to develop here? Doubtful.

 

After RAF Saxavord shut, one of the long term workers there told me, in the face of all the Enterprise Company hyperbole of small business development, that "Somebody wid need tae awpin a fac'try" Smartest thing anybody in the island said at that point. The idea of a race of niche business sustaining anything like Shetland's current population is a mere conceit.

 

Now, Ghost, I accept that this is far from ideal and the points you make are substantially correct. I accept also this is the sort of economic model that would have both Galbraith and Friedman whirling, but until the national political and economic structure changes its one we're stuck with.

 

UDI anyone?

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From what I was hearing on the radio tonight it sounds like another major SIC cockup. How on earth did they ever imagine folk would accept a 25% pay cut is beyond me. They are also not willing to release information on their stats to substantiate their claim that only quarter of staff are getting pay cuts. All sounds a bit dubious to me.

 

I have heard several stories of staff doing exactly the same jobs getting paid different rates !! Others are now getting paid less than the staff they supervise !! No-one will be looking for promotion there !!

 

You couldn't make it up !!

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I have heard several stories of staff doing exactly the same jobs getting paid different rates !!

 

I, too, have heard some cracking stories about this today......i'm itching to post them but i'm gonna get the details a little more accurate before doing so. The inequalities are nothing short of laughable, given that the whole issue is labelled 'single status' or whatever.

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I think that is why so little has been said about this.. everyone is still in a shock at how obscenely bad the whole situation is.

 

if things were to go through as they stand.. I will be look for what was previously perceived as a demotion, just to be able to get a semi decent wage again

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