Monday, March 8, 2010

More on Car Parking!

Following on from a previous article on our secret council I received an e-mail from a Conservative District Councillor pointing to more information on the Huntingdonshire DC website. This information was contained within the Agenda/Minutes for the OSC Environmental Well-being on 10th November 2010.

This OSC meeting reviewed a report from the secret (because the public is currently denied the reports/minutes) Car Parking Working Party. I note with interest that Cllr Harty was  at this OSC meeting and obviously agreed with what the Car Parking WP proposed.
This is at odds with what Cllr Farrer asserted that he and Cllr Harty weren't consulted on the proposed car park charging. Cllr Harty was at the meeting. Indeed as District Councillors both have the right to access these agendas, reports and minutes. To say neither was consulted is rather lame.

Annex A to the report has the membership of the Working Party. From St Neots was Conservative Cllr Mandy Thomas. So did Mandy Thomas actually agree with this policy? I think we should be told!

The Liberal Democrat representative was Cllr Priestman. It was alleged that Cllr Priestman didn't turn up to either meeting of this Working Party. Whilst this allegation has been made, there is no way of checking this information as HDC has deemed the minutes of this meeting are secret.

Annex C is about the proposed charges for Riverside and Cambridge Street. These start at 20 pence per hour and free on Sunday. So all this fuss is being made for 20 pence an hour! Hardly seems worth it.

So when I hear the term "St Neots Conservative Councillors" are fighting hard to stop charging I find they aren't. I take it that Cllr Mandy Thomas agreed to the recommendations of the working party. On 10th November 2009 Cllr Harty agreed to the decision of the working party. All this came before the Council at its meeting on 2nd December 2009. So all St Neots District Councillors know about this. But the minutes show they did nothing.

I also point out I cannot find anything from the Liberal Democrats about this at District Council. Even with Cllr Thorpe, as Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrat group, should be raising the issue of car parking charges at every opportunity!

The main problem with this sort of campaign is it is one sided. The call is to stop car parking charges. The income projection is within the HDC budget. None of the protagonists have identified what would have to be cut to replace the lost income.

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