Watchdog sidesteps £3m overspend

PUBLISHED: 06:53 06 April 2006 | UPDATED: 09:05 24 May 2010

A GOVERNMENT financial watchdog has rejected a call by a leading councillor to investigate a £3million overspend on a flagship council project. Cllr Mike Roe had called on the Audit Commission, which investigates council spending, to look into The Campus

A GOVERNMENT financial watchdog has rejected a call by a leading councillor to investigate a £3million overspend on a flagship council project.Cllr Mike Roe had called on the Audit Commission, which investigates council spending, to look into The Campus project in Locking Castle, Weston.The flagship scheme, which includes Herons' Moor Community Primary School, a library, Baytree School, sports hall and a resource centre, cost almost £11m to build after North Somerset Council had budgeted just £8m.The Audit Commission instead suggested the council's own auditor, accountants Robson Rhodes, could carry out the inquiry.But the Conservative leader in North Somerset is insisting the investigation must be done by an 'independent' body.The council published a report in November into how the project's costs went £3m over budget but Cllr Roe feels many questions were left unanswered.He said: "The review should be done entirely independently so that people can be confident about whatever comes out.

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