Daily View 2×2: 8 February 2010

by Stephen Tall on February 8, 2010

Happy Monday morning, everyone. Let’s plunge straight in …

2 Must-Read Blog Posts

What are other Liberal Democrat bloggers saying? Here’s are two posts that have caught the eye from the Liberal Democrat Blogs aggregator:

Spotted any other great posts in the last day from blogs that aren’t on the aggregator? Do post up a comment sharing them with us all.

2 Lib Dem Stories

Lib Dems reveal £63bn PFI bill for the NHS

Figures released by the Lib Dems have revealed that the NHS is facing a £63bn bill for PFI hospitals which are only worth £11bn. The figures also reveal that:

    · The first payments for hospital PFIs began in 1999 and the NHS still owes £58bn on 106 PFI contracts over the next three decades
    · The NHS will have to pay back £7.3bn in PFI payments over the next Parliament alone (2010-2015)
    · The most expensive PFI contract was for Wythenshawe Hospital where the NHS will pay back 16 times the original capital value

Lib Dem shadow health secretary, Norman Lamb, had this to say:

“These figures reveal the disastrous reality of Labour’s stewardship of the NHS. We’re entering into one of the most difficult financial periods in the NHS’s history and this Government’s legacy will be a mountain of debt.

“Despite the enormous amounts of money we owe for these hospitals, many of them will never end up in public ownership. Hospitals all over the country are mortgaged to the hilt and there are serious concerns that these repayments will lead to cuts in vital services. We need a new approach to public services in this country. By setting up an infrastructure bank the Liberal Democrats will ensure that key projects get access to the funding they need to revitalise our economy.

“The Liberal Democrats will change the way the NHS works so that money goes further and patients come first.”


Kirsty to probe ‘abusive’ Lib Dem Welsh AM claim

From Wales Online:

WELSH Liberal Democrat leader Kirsty Williams yesterday pledged to uncover the facts behind allegations Montgomeryshire AM Mick Bates verbally abused staff at the University Hospital of Wales. She said that Mr Bates had no memory of such an incident and was continuing to suffer problems from a severe head injury he sustained when he fell over in the street.

Ms Williams, speaking on the last day of her party’s spring conference in Swansea, said: “We don’t know the facts – we need to get to the bottom of this. My understanding is that Mick was knocked unconscious and suffered a severe head injury – which he’s continuing to have problems with.” …

The former science teacher plans to stand down from the Assembly at next year’s elections but the outcome of the investigation is likely to determine whether he can remain chairman of the sustainability committee. It is understood he met early with his Welsh party leader yesterday before leaving the Swansea conference. He was unavailable for comment last night.

Update: Paramedic claims Lib Dem AM Mick Bates assaulted him (BBC News)