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Boston berated over performance

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Boston BC has been blasted by auditors for lack of both financial and managerial capacity days after losing its chief executive and several senior officers.

Its annual audit letter for Boston in 2007-08 said there had been a fall of 11% over a year in the number of performance indicators in the top quartile and the council offered poor value for money.

The letter said: “Performance management has not been effective and the council currently does not have the capacity to deliver its ambitious plans. However, the council has developed plans for phased improvement in line with available funding.”

It added that Boston was overspent by nearly £1m on a £11m budget only five months into the 2008-09 financial year.

Richard Austin, leader of the ruling Boston Bypass Independents, said: “This report relates to 2007-08 and reflects what we inherited. We know the council needs reforming and we’re doing that in all sorts of ways.”

Chief executive Mick Gallagher left abruptly in July and has been replaced by interim Richard Harbord, who was already advising Boston on finance.

Cllr Austin said his departure was “a separate matter” from the audit letter and that Boston might share a chief executive with neighbouring South Holland DC once decisions on shared services were taken in autumn.

He added that “the recession has rather spoilt progress” on work with Lincolnshire CC to secure a bypass.

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