I won't respond to Labour calls to force Derek Prodger out, says council leader

Councillor Adrian Hardman, county council leader

Councillor Derek Prodger, fire authority chairman

Chief fire officer Mark Yates

First published in News
Last updated
Evesham Journal: Tom Edwards by , Political Reporter

THE leader of Worcestershire County Council has rejected calls to force Derek Prodger out of the region’s fire authority - saying he expects his party to support him this month.

Councillor Adrian Hardman has revealed he will not be accepting a plea from the Labour opposition to remove Cllr Prodger from his role after the Mark Yates’ back operation saga.

County Hall’s Labour group has sent the leader an open letter saying they will scrap plans for a motion of no confidence in Cllr Prodger going to a vote on Thursday, May 15 if he is removed from his position before then.

As your Worcester News reported three weeks ago, Labour plan to ask all 56 politicians to vote at the next full council meeting, calling Mark Yates’ operation a “fiasco” which “brought the fire authority into disrepute”.

Mr Yates, the chief fire officer, was handed £3,000 towards having a private back operation from taxpayers’ funds after deciding not to wait 12 weeks on the NHS.

The letter to Cllr Hardman, from Labour group leader Councillor Peter McDonald says: “As you are no doubt aware the Labour Group is minded to call for a motion of no confidence in Derek Prodger as chairman of the fire authority.

“However, I feel it would be more appropriate for you to take action yourself by removing him from the fire authority, thus, stopping any dirty washing being aired in public and the necessity for a motion of confidence.”

Cllr Hardman said: “They can put down all the notices of motion they like, it’s nothing to do with me as Cllr Prodger was elected (as chairman) by members of Hereford and Worcester Fire & Rescue Authority way of dealing with this matter by letting the county council decide.

“I would be amazed if we didn’t support Derek Prodger.

"But I welcome the debate.

"When fire officers go on strike we’d expect the chief fire officer to go out and man a fire engine.”

Cllr Prodger says he’s done “nothing untoward” and is determined to carry on.

His stance means the motion is now almost certain to go to the vote of the entire council.

Mr Yates had private back surgery costing £5,090 back in October after deciding he was in too much pain to wait on the NHS.

He then claimed it on expenses, and 20 days after the operation was handed a contribution of £3,000 after four fire authority councillors, including Cllr Prodger as chairman, had a vote.

Mr Yates, who is paid £122,000, has now paid the money back.

Comments (5)

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5:30pm Thu 1 May 14

kimik8 says...

Mr Yates has probably over the years saved many lives.
All firefighters have my upmost respect and if my taxes are used in any way to help them when help is needed , I am happy to oblige.
Now ...
duck ponds and second home expenses are a completely different matter
Mr Yates has probably over the years saved many lives. All firefighters have my upmost respect and if my taxes are used in any way to help them when help is needed , I am happy to oblige. Now ... duck ponds and second home expenses are a completely different matter kimik8
  • Score: 1

5:40pm Thu 1 May 14

CJH says...

"Cllr Prodger says he’s done “nothing untoward” and is determined to carry on". He's completely in denial isn't he? Someone really should have a word in his ear and put him right. He can't be allowed to continue blundering on as he has for many years without being restrained.
"Cllr Prodger says he’s done “nothing untoward” and is determined to carry on". He's completely in denial isn't he? Someone really should have a word in his ear and put him right. He can't be allowed to continue blundering on as he has for many years without being restrained. CJH
  • Score: 7

9:49am Fri 2 May 14

green49 says...

ARROGANCE and looking after ones mates comes to mind, Prodger should have gone years ago and Hardman is npot fit for purpose, he should be sacked he has cost the taxpayers unbelieveable amounts of money with his decisions, he is main problem with WCC.
ARROGANCE and looking after ones mates comes to mind, Prodger should have gone years ago and Hardman is npot fit for purpose, he should be sacked he has cost the taxpayers unbelieveable amounts of money with his decisions, he is main problem with WCC. green49
  • Score: 7

9:52am Fri 2 May 14

green49 says...

THE leader of Worcestershire County Council has rejected calls to force Derek Prodger out of the region’s fire authority - saying he expects his party to support him this month.

Thats it in a nutshell, nothing to do with value for the taxpayer but CON servatives again.
THE leader of Worcestershire County Council has rejected calls to force Derek Prodger out of the region’s fire authority - saying he expects his party to support him this month. Thats it in a nutshell, nothing to do with value for the taxpayer but CON servatives again. green49
  • Score: 4

6:30pm Fri 2 May 14

3thinker says...

Time to get rid of the County Council altogether.

Merge it with the District Councils.

Reduces bureaucracy.

Saves money.

Means less cuts on the services that are really important.
Time to get rid of the County Council altogether. Merge it with the District Councils. Reduces bureaucracy. Saves money. Means less cuts on the services that are really important. 3thinker
  • Score: 0

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