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Could Birmingham Council’s parks reorganisation leave the city without the professional expertise needed to comply with the law? It certainly looks like it.

Concerns have already been voiced about cuts in the number of wardens and rangers, which it’s claimed will “undermine one of the city’s premiere resources”.

Now it’s been proposed that the posts of Biodiversity Officer and Nature Conservation Manager be deleted – leaving the city open to legal challenge.

Unless these positions are replaced, it would leave the local authority without the expertise to properly monitor performance against the National Biodiversity Indicator – for which the evaluation must be undertaken by competent qualified ecologists.

It may also leave the Council unable to meet the new requirement to register outdoor pools under the Aquatic Animal Health regulations 2009, without which rangers will be unable to legally remove fish from pools that require de-watering.

Questions were raised about this at yesterday’s Planning Committee, but so far no explanation has been forthcoming about how these commitments might be met under the new structure.

Hasn’t anyone told them 2012 is the International Year of Biodiversity?



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