|A typical political party meeting in Pre BREXIT Europe ....|
Its always a good idea to check out the content of Any Other Business (AOB), usually a convenient place in lofty 'official' documents, usually on the final sheet, to discreetly dump matters, not considered worthy of inclusion in the main body of the meeting, and therefore not needing (they think) detailed or possibly too close an examination, or equally a good place to bury deeply controversial information.
The deposed 'Dear Leader' for example was a past master in this kind of mysterious construction, or he would just AOB verbally by growling at some hapless councillors from the back of the chamber. But sadly that heroic era has long passed, and all that remains is a collection of dusty documents, a chewing gum splattered piazza, an expensive foray into solar, upsetting PCC tenant farmers and pushing up the PCC debt mountain to new majestic heights.
True, it would be good if we could actually see some sun, but that possibly blocked out by the acrid smoke stacks of the old Brickworks, and possibly the chip factory, not to mention the mighty incinerator (and its little brother - another AOB) and all those dioxins pumping upwards possibly affecting primary school results, who can tell?
But the PBROTRIB invites you into a world of party political fantasy.
Pretend that you have to face 'the thrust and parry' of a typical Labour Party PCC Councillors Business Meeting.
They use AOBs to good effect as well.
The AOB we are about to share with you, has to be right at the top of the list, in fact the monster of all AOB's ....
This particular set of Minutes, seems to have been widely leaked, always a good ideal to shred (possibly eating or pulping) your draft copies or computer files, you never know who or what may be poking around your bins especially as Labour Councillors are shown to be positively following in the spirit of their own Dear Leader Jeremy Corbyn. Encouraging inventive spending and seemingly his P'boro foot soldiers welcoming a huge hike in councillor allowances, to be trousered or stuffed into big white (possibly red and/or blue) handbags. Indeed some considering it as worthy replacement revenue - admittedly for NI CLASS 4 self-employed people - who may be missing out on a lucrative contract due to pressing time consuming council business. It does so get in the way..
But there again, some Labour councillors (and being balanced and fair, we must include some Conservatives as well) are not too good at attending main core meetings, but they still quickly bank the very generous allowances, and even now possibly salivating at the prospect of even greater largesse. Indeed one female councillor boasted (possibly after a sherry or two) that during the Christmas break, she regularly spends her hoarded PCC allowances on back to back cruise holidays over Christmas and the New Year. This may come as a shock to some, and to those on zero hours contracts and others looking forward to a rise of 1 or 2 percent if they are lucky, so for you ...
Alan Dowson (Fletton & Woodston ward)
Amjad Iqbal (Central ward)
Sue Johnson, Mahebub Ladha and Mark Burns were not at this meeting.
2. Declarations of interest
3. Minutes of previous meeting
5. Labour Group / Trade Union exchange
6. Labour Group / CLP exchange
membership and affiliated membership data, although numbers had grown to over 800. AE mentioned closer liaison within the party and VP referred him to MJ who was the appointed liaison between Labour Group and the CLP. Membership lists may require further verification and can be referred to Liz Moon or via Chris Jones.
7. Leader’s report
(i) A possible visit from Cllr Peter Roberts of Cambridge City Council who has been involved in
negotiations is to be invited to discuss the regional devolution proposal with Group.
(iii) Proposed prospective dates for ‘Group Training’ are now Mon 21 NOV2016, Sat 26 NOV20 16 and Sat
03 DEC 2016 and will be offered to the trainers.
8. Whip’s report
9. Treasurer’s report
AS stated that allowances were paid on the 28th of the month, so information not quite up to date.
However, on 03 OCT 2016 there was £2,061.44 in the bank, but with deductions this will generally leave
around £55.32 per month. Reserve is usually taken as £950.00 –and considering the contribution for the
New Members event of £50.00 and this would leave approx. £1,000.00 at the moment, not enough should there be an election this year. Contributions are a bit messy as not all are applied in the same way. JS suggested buying Christmas for the Governor’s team, Members’ Services, the Beadles and ‘front of house’ team, as previously. Agreed.
Fly tipping and issues surrounding drug paraphernalia were issues in both East and North wards.
help, enforcement should be encouraged.
93% of the street cleaning budget is used in the city centre and this imbalance creates more of a problem elsewhere as other areas are considered a much lower priority for the mechanical sweepers. Street cleaning can be as infrequent as once in three weeks. Garden rubbish appears in fly tipping now that brown bin collections are charged for. How are the streets prioritised as to which ones get cleaned and when? Who makes that decision? AA has received lots of complaints about regular hotspots. Some wards have been more affected than others, although possibly the problem is not so apparent in the wealthier areas of Tory held wards.
Costings for ‘ward by ward’ can be provided by James Collingwood. Action can be determined, perhaps through
the Budget Working Group looking at landscaping and shrubs. Streets could be moved from medium to low priority or vice versa, identifying particular streets in wards. RF , AE , AI , JJ and AC will set up a working group for
this purpose – to be arranged by RF . Streets and Footpaths’ will be the topic for discussion next month.
11. Any other business
AD defended the use of allowances by councillors on low income – they should be allowed to use this
fund as they wish; it has been provided to be at their disposal. Some can of course donate or use the
allowance for ward purposes. NK pointed out that this is the first increase since 2009, whilst AE noted that it wasn’t just the PT criticising councillors for taking the money. Other public workers are only getting 1%-2% increases and councillor’s rises should be in line with other council workers. SM suggested that councillors do as they will; pocket it, donate to charity or use in the ward – and let it be known. MJ noted that the allowance meant different things to different people, since councillors had many differing circumstances; the loss of time for the self-employed equated to foregone income and this could be many times the allowance. RF concurred that it could be very difficult to be a councillor without independent means.
(ii) Nominations for the ‘elected mayor’ election – EM had announced his wish to be considered as a candidate by email and this was endorsed by AD, although AD considered a Labour party member might have slim chance of winning. JJ wondered who else might stand and whether it was the right time to nominate as a decision on having a mayor had not been given. AD accepted JJ ’s argument.
make a determination and that it should be left to the CLP.
(iii) St Michael’s Gate – JJ had met with three council staff [members] and the Leader to discuss alternatives but these
a particular sector of the market – if there were consequences which could have been foreseen.
Although many were involved in this particular case, it was only right that all work should be done in the name of, or attributable to JJ as ward councillor; there was general agreement on this point. AI referenced the Childrens Act 2007, S.55 and the Borders, Citizens and Immigration Act 2009 as having significant bearing on the St Michael’s Gate decision. AA concurred that JJ will lead on this case and JW called for an acknowledgement of support which Group assented to. JS suggested that an Extraordinary Council meeting be convened to scrutinize the basis of the decision to proceed with the deal. AE considered it a big issue, and despite the Extraordinary Meeting called for the devolution
decision, this was sufficiently important to merit its own additional Extraordinary Meeting. JS asked how many signatures would be required for the Mayor to be bound by a decision to consider such a request. Five councillors, apparently.
https://parkfarmneighbourhoodwatch.blogspot.com E&OE google.com/+JulianBray Tel:+44 (0) 1733 345581 .