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have been working in niche markets such as aerospace, as we have a cluster of companies."We need to use foreign travel in an appropriate and targetted way."It brings dividends although not in the short term."Staffordshire County Council has been on 34 trips, including an annual visit to Ivanavo in Russia. The visit has cost between 3,500 and 6,854 each time.According to the council the the purpose of the trip is 'an international civic partnership between Staffordshire County Council and the City Administration of Ivanovo'.It says it was originally set up to 'share information and best practice on an international scale between several organisations throughout the public sector in Staffs including schools, universities, health organisations, youth groups and the County Council itself."Philip Atkins, Leader of Staffordshire County Council, said: "For 15 years the Ivanovo partnership has helped to develop cultural ties between our two areas and serves as a fact finding opportunity for Reebok Khaki Green
recommendations to keep Staffordshire roads safer. The fact that we have an ageing population is well documented what we want to ensure is that older people can retain their independence through driving safely. This issue is only going to increase; for example in South Staffordshire 40 per cent of people are over 60. We therefore stand by making a relatively modest investment to deliver long term safety for Staffordshire people."Dudley Council has had four overseas trips since 2011 but every one has had its cost Saucony No Chill covered by another organisation.Cannock Chase Council has been to Germany once a year to visit the area's twin town Datteln but the cost has gone up since 2011.That year, Councillor John Beddows went at a cost of 174.26. The following year Councillors Bob and Diane Todd went and it cost 204.86 for flights and 167.52 for accommodation, staying at Zum Ring, a hotel in Datteln. The year after it was chairman Doris Grice and her consort as well as the council's chief executive that went at a total cost of 970.95.
strapped Midland councils
And they say the total cost to the council taxpayer was reduced as most got their expenses funded by hosts or other public bodies. And Walsall Council has failed to respond despite a Freedom of Information Act request being made at the beginning of April.Councils are imposing multi million pound cuts after losing government funding.Wolverhampton City Council alone has been overseas 33 times, as major cuts began to bite.The council is axing 2,000 jobs to save 123 million but is trying to attract investment into Wolverhampton and is promoting the city's aerospace industry overseas.It has been over to India to try to win new business.The council spent 7,247.72 last year sending officers to Bangalore for the Aero India event.Another visit, alongside the University of Wolverhampton, has cost 12.974.86 but some of that will be covered by the university and it was not yet known how much of the bill would fall to the taxpayer. This trip, last October, is listed as a 'trade visit'.Some trips have been fully funded by other bodies, including one worth 1,517 for a head teacher to go to Jamaica. The British Council picked up the tab for a 'school partnership programme'.But the city council did have to fork out 1,369.68 to go to the Paris Aerospace Trade Show.It also used 2,528.40 going over to Richmond in the USA to 'explore opportunities for trade'.Leader of Wolverhampton City Council, Councillor Roger Lawrence, said: "If you look at what some of the German cities like Dusseldorf and Frankfurt do to attract investment, it is jaw dropping. They have whole teams of people specialising in this."We Reebok Navy Sport Shoes
both parties. We are able to share learning on how we run local government, how we can improve our economies, transport issues and improving people's health, involving a number of partners across the county."For the very modest cost of 3,500 the recent trip built on and strengthened our relationship with the Ivanovo region which now features links between Staffordshire's schools, older people in one of our day centres and community work with sports clubs such as Burton Albion. Russia is also an important export market, for national and Staffordshire's major employers such as JCB and other local businesses, so it benefits our economy and local jobs now and in the future to forge closer ties with the country."In the autumn the Shire Hall will be hosting an exhibition of rare Russian artwork from Ivanovo, called Palekh, which has previously toured Germany and Italy, which will give Staffordshire people a further insight into the region."The council also sent two officers over to Vienna for a road safety conference last year at a cost of more than 900. However the cost was met out of fines paid by speeding drivers.The conference was to look at transport, safety and quality of life issues for older people.Staffordshire County Council's cabinet support member for transport Mark Deaville said: "The aim of this conference was to share Europe wide expertise in increasing safety among older drivers. This is not an issue unique to the UK and we have been able take away evidence based Saucony Kineta Relay Womens
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