A barmy way to save cash

THERE are times when the Government gets it so badly wrong that you can't help but laugh.

Either that or boil over with rage at yet another example of ministers' crass ineptitude.

As such, the plan to establish a new quango to help West Yorkshire's councils save money takes some beating.

To be fair, the so-called Regional Improvement and Efficiency Partnership looks a decent enough idea on paper.

Not least because central Government's current policy of leaving Leeds grossly underfunded means we need all the help we can get.

But then we come to the price tag – a whopping 18m. And guess what? We taxpayers are the ones who once again will be left to pick up the bill.

Then there are the ways in which it is suggested that this new organisation could help local authorities save money.

These include the brainwave of getting neighbouring councils to share "back office" administrative work – which sounds like a recipe for bureaucratic chaos.

Unsurprisingly, opposition politicians have been queueing up to rail against the perversity of spending this astronomical sum of money on setting up a body to save cash.

However, as usual the Government is carrying on regardless, insisting the plan will save the public purse nearly 500m between now and 2011.

All we can say is we look forward to seeing those balance sheets.

Fitting honour

BRAVE Sarah Ramsden battled cancer to achieve her dream of becoming a full-time flight attendant. Tragically, the disease eventually returned and went on to claim her life at the age of 23.

Despite her illness, fun-loving Sarah raised thousands of pounds for the Teenage Cancer Unit at Leeds General Infirmary and other good causes.

Friends say she never complained and was an inspiration to them all.

She has now been honoured with the first ever posthumous nomination for a top learning and skills award.

It is a fitting tribute to a special girl who overcame the odds to achieve her dreams. Sarah may be gone but she is certainly not forgotten.

Weird west

A NEW survey shows West Yorkshire tops a list of UFO hotspots.

Apparently the county has more sightings of potential aliens than anywhere else in the UK.

As with all studies of this sort it must be taken with a pinch of salt.

How can we be sure they weren't just Lancastrians on a day trip across the Pennines?

REVELATION: Mateusz Klich in action. PIC: Tony Johnson

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