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It mostly covers my work as UNISON Scotland's Head of Policy and Public Affairs although views are my own. For full coverage of UNISON Scotland's policy and campaigns please visit our web site. You can also follow me on Twitter. I hope you find this blog interesting and I would welcome your comments.

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Goodbye Sir Ian!

The Water Industry Commission has published its annual report.

The report gives more evidence of the benefits of having water as a public service in Scotland. Stable prices, improved customer service and reducing leakage this year.

The report makes some fanciful claims about the benefits of competition in the business retail sector. There is little here that could not have been achieved by a water efficiency programme. We could have saved the millions spent on regulatory systems, rebranding etc.

There is much emphasis in the report on cost savings at the WIC. Not surprising after a series of investigations by the The Herald has highlighted lavish expenditure. The latest was spending about £1000 a month ferrying around senior executives, including trips home from an expensive restaurant for its chief executive, Alan Sutherland.

The WIC Chair, Sir Ian Byatt is leaving the Commission this month. This former privatisation advisor to Margaret Thatcher was a very bizarre appointment to this post. He has campaigned relentlessly in favour of privatising Scottish Water and has cost the water charge payer a small fortune for stepping well outside his remit. Again we can thank The Herald for investigatory persistence.

As I have called for Sir Ian's dismissal on several occasions the decision to replace him is very welcome. I am not expecting an invite to his leaving do. Cherio Sir Ian, you will not be missed!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for this information. I work for the University of Dundee and we have just published research into water governance, the full title of which is 'Water and Sanitation Services in Europe: Do Legal Frameworks provide for "Good Governance"?'. WIC was analysed in this research. This is available for free download at www.dundee.ac.uk/water/projects/watersanitationservicesineurope/