Friday, July 15, 2005

Poop poop!

I forgot to mention a salient point about the problems Mike Whitby is having combining his career as a trend-setting salesman for MG sports cars and a part-time job running Birmingham.

You may recall that after Rover went bump, the administrators, PWC, demanded the return of all those vehicles supplied to employees under a company scheme, as the insurance expired at midnight on the 30 April.

Now these weren't cars loaned to millionaire businessmen, these were cars used daily by wives and sons, daughters and friends. Ordinary cars - the sort of car that Rover needed to sell in volume. No matter, they had to go back - they weren't left on a neighbour's drive or only driven a couple of times, these were used daily as family cars. Perhaps these would have been better ambassadors for the company than a man who can't even convince a majority of voters in the city to back him.

Even the handful of top managers who had the MG SV and SVRs as company cars (chief executive Kevin Howe actually had one of each - the SVR is even pricier) had to return their cars, so PWC's decision to let Mike (apparently uniquely) hang onto his seems even more peculiar - shouldn't they seek to secure all company assets? 44 of these cars were built and fewer than 10 have been sold in total.

The more you look at it, the odder it seems.

Wouldn't you have thought that Mike should have insisted on returning the car to PWC, rather than limply hanging on to it? Perhaps he's looking forward to the day his administration rips up the traffic calming, takes down those speed cameras and removes the last bus lane, so he can dash through the city like Mr Toad.

All summed up by the 63 year old university porter Pete Heeley, who had a car through his son's work for Rover:
'I am going to miss it. It's back to the bus, or get my bike out.'

There is a history of Tories telling us to get on our bikes.

By the way, a reminder to councillors that if they suspect a fellow member of breaching the code, they are under a legal duty to report it in writing to the Standards Board:

7. A member must, if he becomes aware of any conduct by another member which he reasonably believes involves a failure to comply with the authority's code of conduct, make a written allegation to that effect to the Standards Board for England as soon as it is practicable for him to do so.
I'm minded to complain myself.

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