Free School Milk

I thought the debate that raged yesterday about the discussion about free school milk was very interesting. Firstly I think Number 10 got it spot on, politically speaking. Some commentator have suggested that the issue got along way down the line before it was stopped and I simply don’t see that; a junior minister sends a ministerial letter to a Scottish Executive office opening up the debate.

Indeed that debate seems to be centred, quite rightly, around the issue of a universal offer or should the provision be targeted to help poorer families with they children’s nutrienial needs; the ending of universal benefits must be right in the current economic climate, but should that include free school milk at £59million maybe not; not to mention how a school would administer who got the free milk and who did not, and then those who were not entitled to it but whose’s parents had paid and what about those kids who decided they then wanted the milk but had not paid, most 5 years olds don’t tend to carry much cash with them!, a nightmare as one teacher pointed out to me.

At a very pleasant lazy sunday afternoon lunch with friends I asked around what people thought and the general feeling is that programmes should be targeted at those who most need it, and so they should, but perhaps milk should be left alone.

To my mind the more interesting bit is around the command structure of Government, gone are the days of centralised paranoid control and it seems to me what David Cameroon is trying to do is create a culture whereby the intellectual prowess of MPs, Civil Servants, and those who are involved in the various think tanks is allowed to proposed debate and refine policy to get us out of the mess this county.

So on that note, I thought the debate is worth having, and debates such as this should continue to be had but then it’s right for David Cameroon and his team to say ‘I see what you are proposing and no don’t like that one’.

To some extent this is mirrored in local government, as we face the cuts lots of different saving are proposed by Councillors and Officers and its the role of the Leader to take each idea and to say, don’t like that one.

But I also think residents have a great role to play in this debate about what we do in the future, and that is a part of what is proposed by the New Stratergic Direction, we want people’s input to what is proposed so that we can make more informed choices; I ask at every forum I attend from surgeries to Parish Council meetings to the articles I write in various local magazines for people to let me know what they think, how they should shape future services and where they would make the cuts.

So let me know!

About askcolinnoble
I'm a Conservative politician-lite, I dabble a bit in Party Politics with my main focus of working hard and being a strong voice for my community making sure local government delivers quality services and fellow residents get value for money for their hard earned money they pay in Council tax | Where this Gravatar appears and I am expressing my views or liking something I do so in a personal capacity and does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of Suffolk County Council, Forest Heath District Council, the Conservative Party or come to think of it anyone else | But having said the above at an election time and to stay legal, anything I write is promoted by Lance Stanbury on behalf of Colin Noble, both at West Suffolk Conservative Association, Park Farm Cottage, Fordham St. Genevieve, Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk IP28 6TS

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