Saturday, July 31, 2010

Why does HDC have to make cuts?

There seems to be some misconceptions about why HDC is in this deep mess. This is a simple guide on the reason for the cuts. All Council Tax figures quoted are for Band D average Council taxpayer for the HDC element of the Council Tax bill.

The first point to consider is the level of spending against Council Tax raised. In the current budget the amount of money raised from Council Tax and also funded by the deficit is £11.9 million or £204.88 each.

We currently receive services that require Council Tax at the level of £204.88 but we only pay £124.17 (£7.2 million). The difference is £80.71 (£4.7 million) which is funded by rapidly diminishing reserves. When the reserves have gone the £80.71 still needs to be funded.

The second point for consideration is the services we currently receive we are not being taxed enough and should pay an extra £80.71.

The ultimate question is: Do we put up Council Tax up by at least £80.71 or cut services or a combination of the two?

Friday, July 30, 2010

Group to consider possible pool sites

So the Swimming Pool Trust is now looking at two pieces of land as possible sites for an open air swimming pool. This from a Trust that can't even get its Annual Report and Accounts in to the Charity Commissioners on time. As previously reported this is not a new feature. How can we trust this body when it can't even keep send its accounts in on time?

Charges Protest Hots Up

Apparently the Town Mayor, Gordon Thorpe, and fellow Liberal Democrat of organiser Steve van de Kerkhove will be attending the march. Though Gordon does his best to kick the protest in the teeth with: "But he added that REALISTICALLY he did not think the march will make much difference." - SO WHY MARCH?

The Hunts Post gets a major point wrong. HDC is NOT introducing these charges to fill a funding gap left by a Central Government cuts. THE REASON why HDC is introducing these charges is the deficit budget HDC has been running for many years.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Yet more on car parking debate

Why should we help you? - Joan Gutteridge makes some very good points about the whinging that comes from St Neots. And that is a good point. St Neots residents are looking like a bunch of whingers who don't know a good thing when it happens. If St Neots carries on this way then the rest of Huntingdonshire will stop listening.

Was there a covenant? - John Slack asks this question. The answer is there was and it has run out.

Charge won't deter visitors - Cllr Paul Ursell breaks cover with a letter. The difficult choices that Paul refers to have always been there. This is why I have always considered the car parking issue to be a political pantomime played out to the watching public.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Protest without music?

I read that Steve van de Kerkhove, District Councillor and Town Councillor has called off the music part of protest this coming Sunday. Member of the Licensing Committee, Steve says: "We are not going to have an amplifier or music because there's a licensing issue". DOH!

To find out what licensing issue was I looked up on the HDC website to see if any licences had been applied for. The Town Council does have a licence for the playing of music on Sundays. If the Town Council supports this protest why isn't the Town Council allowing this licence to be used?

There is something called a Temporary Event Notice which organisers have to put in for regulated entertainment. On the licensing website there is no Temporary Event Notice.

So the "licensing issue" is they didn't send in a Temporary Events Notice. Not really a licensing issue! Just an issue of bad organisation! I just hope they have informed the Police of this demonstration?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Future of St. Neots - Options - My comments

There is a new site called The Future of St Neots. There is a section on the future Governance of St Neots and looks at the different options regarding where St Neots could be.
This is very true. Except South Cambs would have to agree to us joining with them. It could be the case St Neots wants to join and South Cambs doesn't want us. The focus will be on developments around Cambridge. I would further point out that in such a Council St Neots would have roughly 17% of the representation. Same as in Huntingdonshire.
Another con would be the Leisure Centre, Priory Centre and the parks. These would have to be taken over by the Town Council. The costs would be added to the Town Tax which would need roughly £1.2 million extra to run. This would work out to £120 on each average Council Tax bill.
I don't see how Towns would have more control over local issues when the decision would be taken in Cambridge. Also you would have to get all the other Districts to agree to this plan. To have this vision of Towns doing more there would have to be primary legislation to allow more powers. I do feel there needs to be a better idea of the numbers. Getting rid of say 4 Chief Executives at £200,000 each would save over the County £4 per Band D Council Taxpayer. 
The idea that combining District Councils would make mean less staff is a myth. Many of these mergers have always thrown up problems over management. There are many unitary authorities over the country which are testaments to how to make a mess of local government.
Not really. The major supplier of money, central government have a large say in what local government does.
The simple answer is yes. Rutland County Council is a unitary authority of roughly 39,000 residents works. It was understood right from the start that this would cost. This differential is roughly £250 extra per Band D Council Taxpayer. 
The real problem with this is St Neots doesn't have the local government infrastructure to take on these responsibilities and would have to build them up. 
And the Leisure Centre!
Before making statements, lets take a look at the statistics. Huntingdonshire has a population of 168,000 of which 30,000 live in St Neots. So 17% live in St Neots and 83% don't. St Neots gets 9 District Councillors out of 52 or 17%. Huntingdon has 12% of the population and with 7 Councillors out of 52 has 13% of the population. Even if all the Councillors from Huntingdon and St Neots were added together they would only be 16 out of 52 or 30%. So 70% of the population of Huntingdonshire don't live in either St Neots or Huntingdon.

So why is Huntingdon getting more than St Neots? Simply because it is the centre of a conurbation including, St Ives, Brampton, Godmanchester and other villages has a population of over 50,000. Add in Sawtry and Ramsey and this adds another 15,000 to these numbers making 65,000.

The one option that has been missed is to move to Bedfordshire. Not a good option but an option nevertheless. 

Monday, July 26, 2010

More on the Riverside Car Park campaign

I thought I would take another trawl through this Facebook protest site to see what is being said. Last time I found lies and untruths. This time I found:
Steve says Town Councillors get no allowances or expenses.
In the Annual Accounts it says:
So they do get expenses!
And do any of them get an Allowance? Well the Town Mayor does!

Our Steve goes onto say:
But our Councillors don't get pensions on their allowances.

Then there is this statement:
These charges are opposed by St Neots Town Council, but are being forced in anyway
So what has SNTC got to do with all this? Does SNTC own the car park? No they don't. Someone thinks SNTC has bigger boots than they actually have!

And they still like linking to
For some reason the admin staff like linking to this site which contains lies, untruths and twisting of the truth. Why do they keep doing this? Or do the admin staff stand by Jon Mountfort's statements.

On last thing. The Facebook group is producing a leaflet. Below is a parody:

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Threatened to resign?

Interesting piece in here about Councillor Colin Hyams. This Cabinet member says he "...had threaten to resign from Cabinet over the toilet closures."

There is a big difference between threatening to resign and actually resigning. Locally, Cllr Farrer gave the same sort of threat over the Riverside Car Park. Threatening is one thing. In both cases their bluffs have been called. Cllr Hyams and Farrer threatened to resign. The policies they were protesting went through. And neither resigned!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Independents standing at local elections

As ever the cry goes out that Councillors should not get allowances or expenses. The public seems to feel that local politicians shouldn't get allowances and/or expenses and should do these jobs for free. I disagree with this sentiment. Councillors are doing a job and should be recompensed for doing these jobs. I do believe that Councillors should be paid more, but should be expected to do more for this increase in pay. 52 District Councillors covering the whole of Huntingdonshire is too large. The same goes for 70 County Councillor and 21 St Neots Town Councillors.

So with all these people whinging on about Councillor pay I would have thought there would be tons of people standing at elections to get these jobs. Well no. The number of Independents standing in St Neots at local elections is ZERO.
Everytime I see someone going on about Councillors pay I take the stance "Why don't you stand?". The answers invariably are a list of excuses as to why they shouldn't.
If Chris stood and got elected he would have the chance to stand up for the ignored masses at this Council. Chris is not the only one to whinge on about Councillor allowances and expenses. Jon Mountfort is another who goes on about Councillors allowances and expenses. I take it Jon Mountfort, Chris Brick and all the others who moan will be standing at the local election in May 2011 will do so on a ticket of not claiming the allowances and expenses they so despise.

I keep getting asked why don't I stand for any of the Councils. Here are a number of reasons why:

1. It doesn't pay enough.
2. I don't want to spend weeks campaigning.
3. I don't want to deal with constituents or voters problems.
4. I would publish everything I received and not keep it secret.
5. There are loads more reasons, but these are the main reasons.

Friday, July 23, 2010

More on the HDC budget consultation

HDC has done a wonderful thing. It has actually got a consultation which generally works. What is missing is how HDC got into this mess. The talk is about the coalition and central government cuts. Nothing about the trouble HDC was already in with its finances with £6.1 million already pencilled in for cuts. The coalition cuts will just add to these problems.

What is also missing is the context of these cuts. What we are looking at are cuts to the front line services. The cuts to the back office are already deemed to have taken place.

Completing the consultation gave me the realisation of what HDC does and what could be cut.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Still haven't put in the accounts!

I see the swimming pool trust is still unable to comply with the law and file the annual report and accounts with The Charity Commissioners. I raised this at the Annual Town Meeting and I was informed they would look into this.

Here is a suggestion. The accounts for 2010/11 should be in draft. Why not get the 2009/10 and 2010/11 both approved and file them at the same time! This will stop the continual law breaking by all our Town Councillors.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

And Peter Downes finally replies!

Finally, I get an e-mail from Peter Downes confirming the policy that the HDC Liberal Democrats will reverse the car parking charges if they gain a majority. In his e-mail Peter Downes said:

"Martin’s e-mail explains why we think the car parking policy proposed by the HDC for St. Neots is wrong and if we were to win majority control, we would reverse it. We would obviously have to find other ways of making savings to make up for the loss of income from not charging."

The sentence that talks about finding other way of making savings opens up another series of questions about where these cuts will fall. With £6.1 million of cuts already pencilled in there isn't that much that can be cut!

I've taken these cuts from the current HDC Consultation:

Citizens Advice Bureau
Volunteer Cars
Activities for Young People
Holiday Schemes
After Schools Clubs
Close the swimming pool
CCTV Cameras in St Neots
Closure of customer services in St Neots
Cut in Street Cleaning
Withdraw maintenance of Priory Park and Riverside Park

So the selfish people who want Council Taxpayer funded "Free" parking are VERY HAPPY to cut some or all of these schemes so they don't have to pay 20 pence an hour/£1.50 a day (free on Sundays).

Monday, July 19, 2010

HDC finally consults over Council Tax

I read in the new District Wide magazine there is to be a consultation on the forthcoming budget. The consultation can be found here. This consultation takes you through 4 levels of spending from basic minimum through to keeping the services roughly the same. This would increase the Council Tax by £60 (48% increase).

I thought level 1 was the right amount. Have a go yourself.

More on this later.

Rural Broadband - Whatever happened to Djanogly's campaign?

There is a piece in the paper about how only one person has signed up to the rural broadband initiative. This is funny because at the beginning of the year Jonathan Djanogly was "Fighting" for Broadband services for rural areas of this constituency. The telco wonders why there is such a low take up of this service. I say: The "Curse of Djanogly" strikes again.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

People to march over 20 pence (Free on Sundays)

On Sunday 1st August 2010 there is to be a march from the Riverside Car Park, St Neots to somewhere in the Town Centre. There are many issues which surround this march. The first should be how to gauge whether this is a success.
The population is roughly 30,000.
Electoral roll is roughly 22,000.
The 2 petitions handed in contained between them 2,193. It was said by the Liberal Democrats that many of the signatures came from people outside St Neots.
The Facebook campaign has passed the 900 mark.

So it would be utterly ridiculous if only a few hundred turn up for the march!

If all the signatories of the petitions turned up there will be 2,193. That would be the minimum number needed to make this protest work. In my view 4,400 would make this protest worthy of note.

So what are these people marching on a Sunday for? To stop the imposition of car parking charges of 20 pence an hour / £1.50 a day - Free evenings and Sundays - at Riverside Car Park, St Neots. Rather ironic the day used for protest is the day that stays free!

A typical outburst is below by Jon Mountfort. His sites are frequently linked by the Facebook campaign run by with some Liberal Democrat Councillors on the admin team.

A typical outburst by Jon Mountfort: (my comments in red)

"This is the bunch of incompetent money-wasters (your opinion with NO EVIDENCE to back this up!) who've built themselves an 18 million pound palace (in previous rants this was £12 million) while removing every single facilitiy and amenity (every single facility and amenity? What has HDC closed? This is a downright lie. The Leisure Centre, Riverside and Priory Parks are some of the facilities and amenity STILL open.) from St Neots to pay for it. As their latest money-making scam, they have just voted to charge for St Neots' last two remaining free car parks (there are many other free car parks. The Hardwick Road Car Park and Priory Park are both still free. Another downright lie!), in doing so ignoring the wishes of over 2000 St Neots residents (the Liberal Democrats says many signatures came from people outside St Neots. So over 2000 St Neots residents didn't sign the petitions. Another UNTRUE statement) who signed two petitions. According to our Great Leader's own figures (which you can read for yourself if you wish by clicking on his face), the most that charging for the Riverside car park can raise is 20,000 pounds a year - that is if anybody still uses it once they have to pay! This is about a quarter of the annual electricity bill for Pathfinder Palace! If you move your mouse over their faces, you can see how much each of them claimed in expenses (this is a twisting of the truth. Councillors are paid a basic allowance plus more for more responsibilities. To label all these as expenses is WRONG and TWISTING the truth.) for 2008/09 - it adds up to about 120 thousand pounds. So if anyone knows of another five car parks they can charge for to cover their expenses, please email our Great Leader - he will be pleased to hear from you. 
Not only that, but HDC produces a glossy newsletter called District Wide to tell us what a good job they are doing! (That's a laugh!) How much does that cost? (Instead of asking the question why didn't Jon look this up?)And the publicity department to produce it? The Right Honourable Eric Pickles has described these newsletters (no he didn't) as "propaganda on the rates" and "town hall Pravdas". (Eric Pickles was having a go at Councils producing local newspapers like the News and Crier and Hunts Post not District Wide. There is an issue Councils using CT Payers money for newspapers.) Good for Eric Pickles! He's absolutely right. (And Jon Mountfort is absolutely wrong!) Let's tell him what these buffoons are doing with our money, while they are charging mums to park their cars so their children can feed the ducks! 
They also pay a Chief Executive 200,000 pounds a year to run the Council efficiently (that's a joke!) What does he do? Does anyone know? (The Councillors do and you can find out.) As we are paying him, perhaps he could have a webcam installed on his desk so we can see him in action! There's one thing I can promise you - I bet he doesn't pay to park his car! Just for fun, I've included his expenses claim for 2008/09 - yes, you've guessed it: 469 pounds for car parking! (Wrong! It is for Transport/Parking. There is nothing to say any money was spent on Parking. Jon Mountfort is distorting the truth.) Nice one! 
But it doesn't end there! There are three other executive officers employed by this second-tier Council (remember it's not a County Council), who each get over 100,000 pounds a year. How can it take so many expensive people just to empty your bin? (Jon Mountfort deliberately misses out on the other services HDC provides) And talking of emptying bins, our poor dustmen have been cut back and cut back so often, they now have to run to do their job! This is so the fat-cats can say they are being more efficient. When was the last time they ran to work?"

I looked up scraphdc and savestneots on google and found these are pointing to a site called classic car tests. A bit of a weird site which tests two cars and has many photos of a woman called "Alex".

Those who are going to march on a Sunday to stop the charges, 20 pence an hour/£1.50 a day, free in evenings and Sundays, should think where the cuts will fall instead. Here are some options: Citizens Advice Bureaux or Huntingdonshire Volunteers. 

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Should the Town Council cut their budget by 25%?

With other councils having to cut their budgets by 25%, should SNTC do the same? CCC and HDC are both cutting services and employees to keep the Council Tax level. Some of these services could well be useful to St Neots. Who in St Neots will be able to take up these services?

St Neots Town Council will have to take up some of these services and run them. What I feel is this shouldn't mean a rise in Council Tax to pay for any of this. What SNTC should be doing now is plan to cut its budget by 25% so it can absorb any services that need to be continued.

If St Neots doesn't plan to cut its budget there will be problems when services are cut or closed by HDC which St Neots wants continued. Otherwise the Town Council part of the Council Tax will rise and rise dramatically.

Friday, July 16, 2010

What a mucking fuddle

I wrote to Peter Downes, Leader of the Liberal Democrats on HDC, asking him about what is the Liberal Democrats Group policy towards Car Parking in St Neots. So did I get a reply from Peter Downes? Well no. My e-mail was passed onto Martin Land - who is not a Councillor or anything to do with The District Group. Martin Land informed me that local policy is made by the local branch. Hmmm! Martin also informed me that once the Liberal Democrats gained a majority they would reverse this charge!

This is a very weird set up. In essence, the St Neots branch decides policy for the rest of the Liberal Democrats. That is fundamentally undemocratic as this is a small minority of Huntingdonshire taking a decision which will effect the majority.

If this local branch policy is therefore HDC Liberal Democrat Group policy, shouldn't have the Liberal Democrat Group Leader, Peter Downes, been able to answer this question himself? I wonder why he didn't?

These are essentially the same St Neots Liberal Democrats who promised much in the SNTC Forward Plan Mark 1 and yet reneged on many major points. How can they guarantee they won't do the same on this "promise"?

To ensure I get this right I have written to Peter Downes again. I hope I get a reply from him this time around. Passing this to Martin Land just makes me feel Peter Downes and HDC Liberal Democrat Group don't want to make this commitment.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Huntingdonshire strikes back

One point that is missed by the those who tell lies and untruths about the imposition of charges at Riverside Car Park is this is being read by the rest of Huntingdonshire. They tend to take a different view. In this weeks letter section of the News and Crier are a couple of good letters:

New Parking Charges are Fair Enough

- Simon Williams of Godmanchester makes some very good points about the reasonableness of the 20 pence and hour (Free on Sundays). Simon rubbishes the suggestion that people will go elsewhere and pay higher amounts in fuel charges and parking charges to miss out on the 20 pence charges.

- D W Steddy of Huntingdon also makes some very good points about the scale of parking charges here in Huntingdonshire (cheap) compared to the rest of the country (expensive). He also makes the point about the majority of money raised in Council Tax going to CCC.

The News and Crier continues in it series of letters that shows how ignorant some of the residents of St Neots are with a letter from:

- R T Watson of St Neots. In this letter entitled: Not surprised by the arrogance - Watson shows how ignorant St Neots residents actually are. His main argument is the cabinet are arrogant because they ignored the petition. What Watson ignores is £4.7 million deficit or the £6.1 million of cuts. HDC isn't arrogant. They are desperate!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Protesters claim break-up of NHS

How times have changed. The Labour supporting Unions didn't mention the Labour Government franchising policy, but blamed the Strategic Health Authority over Hinchingbrooke.

Now, the Coalition is in Government the Labour supporting Unions now say it is the "Coalition Governments" fault. This is wrong! This is a Labour policy which the Coalition Government is carrying on with.

The trouble with the Labour supporting Unions is they are changing their tune. It is a Labour policy. You couldn't come out and blame your Labour Government then. Indeed your unions poured money into the last Labour General Election campaign.

This is the problem. The Strategic Health Authority is still there. So why aren't the unions still blaming the SHA? I feel a socialist rewriting of history is happening which will rub out Labours Policy of Franchising Hinchingbrooke.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Pathfinder House

With many dubious claims about Pathfinder House being made, I thought I would take a look at the funding of this building.

The one point that needs to be remembered, in all this, is loans for Government projects can be very cheap. The Public Works Loan Board is the Government Agency where Local Government goes for loans. These loans are raised through Gilts and so long as the UK Government is a good credit risk the loans can be cheap.

When HDC raised a £10 million loan to pay for part of the cost of Pathfinder House it did so at:
£10 million over the 49-50 year period of the loan is £200,000 a year in capital repayment. At 3.9% this equates to a £390,000 a year and will slowly decrease over the period. So there is an initial repayment of roughly £590,000 per annum. What has also to be taken into account is the loss of the £8,000,000 for this project from capital. At about 3% interest rate this would mean a loss in interest of £240,000. The yearly basic cost is roughly £830,000. 

The reason behind this rebuild is: "Independent structural engineers have confirmed that the irreversible deterioration of Pathfinder House’s walls will be at crisis point by 2010. The scaffolding which keeps it safe will have to remain in place until the building is demolished." The building was falling down and needed to be renewed.

I read weird ideas like renting a property instead. This would work out as very expensive compared to owning the building. The decision of rebuilding Pathfinder House is probably the best option considering the circumstances. Not the conclusion I wanted.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Voice your ignorance of HDC

In a letter, Jon Mountfort voices his ignorance about HDC yet again! He promotes his dubious website still littered with lies and untruths in an attempt to encourage people to send e-mails to a whole host of Councillors and Ministers.

When is HDC going to consult us over cuts?

Two weeks ago the residents of Huntingdonshire were informed that they were going to be consulted over the forthcoming cuts of the next 3 months. So when are we going to be consulted? According to HDC we have already missed 2 weeks out of 12. I would have thought the Conservative run HDC would have the consultation ready to roll out. Obviously not!

HDC has had years to inform residents of the cuts needed and to consult. They have stayed very quiet of this. Now they give us 12 weeks HDC has gone silent. Back to the old ways!

What would the Liberal Democrats do in power?

I thought I would look at the official website of the local Liberal Democrats to see what is going on. I thought I would find many pages on the campaign to reverse the introduction of car park charges in St Neots.

What I found was nothing. Absolutely nothing. The page for St Neots is empty.

So I have written to Cllr Peter Downes, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group, to get an answer on whether they would return these car parks to being free. The following is the text of my e-mail:

"In St Neots, your colleagues are running a campaign to reverse the introduction of car parking charges in two additional car parks. As the Council Cabinet has pushed through the introduction of these charges, I would like to know what the policy of the Liberal Democrats is now on these car parks? Specifically, is it Liberal Democrat policy to return these car parks to being free car parks again?"

I await his reply.

Friday, July 9, 2010

One rule for the Liberal Democrats and another for everyone else!

I thought this site wasn't going to be political! That was until Barry Chapman turned up to support the campaign and inform residents what he had done.

Then Steve (Liberal Democrat) dives in and informs Barry (Conservative) of what he feels is wrong with what Barry had said previously. This is a correction. Funny that many of the lies and untruths get by without correction but Barry Chapman is jumped on.
Having made all these corrections and political points, Steve decides to say: "If you wish to continue to score political points I would ask you to leave the group."
Later, Fiona Birks joins the group and starts making party political points.
Did Steve admonish her for this? Did Steve show where the budget forecasts are? The answer is NO! When I brought Fiona's party political points to Steve's attention I was informed Fiona isn't a Councillor.
But Fiona Birks was a Town Councillor until a few months ago. So Fiona is still a Liberal Democrat making Party Political Points. Therefore it is alright for Liberal Democrats to make party political points but the Conservatives can't. One rule for the Liberal Democrats and another for everyone else!

The Cuts Letters - My Comments

Three ways to start the savings - M R Lovell tries to have a go at HDC but misses the points entirely.

1. Street light are a County Council responsibility.
2. The cemetery or closed cemetery is down to the Town Council.
3. As for picking up headstones and clearing up glass, many of these workers are there to do a job. The trouble is once this is done once then it becomes expected. This isn't their jobs.

So no real cuts in this letter. Just an badly aimed attack at HDC.

Clean up and enforce the laws - D. Porter decides the £5 million in savings means more money can be spent?! This is a cut in spending. Her rant does nothing to find where savings can be made! If the mess was outside my house I would clear it rather than bothering the Council over all this.

So no real cuts in this letter. Just an badly aimed attack at HDC.

Why should this be different - Pauline Webster starts off well in calling into question the record of consultations by HDC. So far HDC has done "not much". Where Pauline falls down is over the Job Centre. This was the Labour Government and not HDC which made the change. As for the new offices Megabucks would have not been saved by not building new offices. The Social Security and The Courts are again Labour Government projects. Pauline rants: "Do they believe we are all completely stupid and gullible?". The answer, with all these letters, has to be YES because people get so much wrong.

Recap on Riverside Car Parking Articles

I thought I would do a recap on my articles on the dubious Facebook car parking charges campaign with some Liberal Democrats on the site administration.

3rd February 2010 - Truth behind car parking campaign. The highlights some of the lies and untruths which have been a feature of this campaign. Included is a comparison of car parking charges in surrounding town centre.

18th February 2010 - Footfall affected by roadworks! So keep the car parks free? Whilst many have taken up the fall in footfall, they missed John Davies who informed us the footfall was affected by the roadworks on the A1.

18th February 2010 - Concessions offered in Parking Row. The 38 extra spaces and how our Councillors responded.

17th March 2010 - HDC Cabinet carries on regardless - Just. I went to this Cabinet Meeting. No other members of the public turned up. 

17th March 2010 - A blow to the St Neots Conservatives! or the end of the pantomime. A look at the Conservative campaign?

18th March 2010 - No other play areas in Eaton Ford says Cllr Churchill. Yes there are! Correcting a piece of misinformation.

24th March 2010 - My comments on letters in Hunts Post. Jon Mountfort's first letter on the subject of the Riverside Car Park. Again littered with untruths.

25th March 2010 - My comments on letters in News and Crier. Look at the Conservatives blaming the Liberal Democrats.

25th March 2010 - Have your say on parking charges. Julia Hayward informs readers that people will be driven away from St Neots.

16th April 2010 - Are the St Neots Conservatives worthy? A look at some of the actions of the St Neots Conservatives.

4th June 2010 - Car Parking Consultation up before OSC. - A look at some of those who replied to the consultation.

10th June 2010 - My comments of letters in News and Crier - Jon Mountfort's letter is taken apart.

Hunts Post is wrong over parking

I think the Hunts Post has got hold of the wrong end of the stick on this one. In the Comment part of the paper there is an expectation that this will be a money spinner for HDC.
But the report to a Council Committee actually says something different. It is likely this will run at an overall deficit. 
Instead of being the money spinner The Hunts Post is promoting this is likely to add to the deficit.

The last time I looked, that was a few years ago, parking on zig-zags are not a parking offence. It is a Road Traffic Offence with penalty points and therefore is still a Police enforcement issue.