Democracy Doesn’t Matter in the West

Democracy Doesn’t Matter in the West

Northumberland County Council has withdrawn all public notices and advertising from the Hexham Courant – see their article here.

This is shocking and illustrates the contempt the Labour/Independent coalition have for the people of Corbridge and the Hexham Courant readership area.

The Courant dares to write articles criticising County Council Policy and the advertising spend is withdrawn. If it really is a cost saving measure why do they continue spending money on huge pictures of the leader and deputy leader on billboards, fire engines and bin lorries?

They say we can access important public notices in the Northumberland Gazette – who has ever read the Northumberland Gazette?

If you are appalled by this please share.

 

County Council to Lend Alnwick Garden £8.5m

County Council to Lend Alnwick Garden £8.5m

As reported on BBC Look North – Northumberland County Council are planning to lend £8.5 to Alnwick Garden to create a play area. Whilst it is undoubtedly an ambitious and attractive project is it right to use money from Council Tax payers of Northumberland to fund this? Was it right for Northumberland County Council to lend £78m to their development subsidiary to buy Cramlington shopping centre.

Our candidate Nick Oliver responds to the news.

“Northumberland Council’s elected leaders seem to have lost sight of their key role. Using local authority money to fund projects like this is risky and nobody really knows what burden this will put on residents of our county in future. Northumberland Conservatives will focus on proper regeneration projects and providing core services which is why we must vote out this Labour / Independent coalition”.

New Street Lighting

New Street Lighting

Later this year the council will be changing the street lighting to low energy LED lighting. There will be an opportunity for some more lights & posts in the Corbridge County Council ward. If you have any suggestions for where they should be please email Nick Oliver at nick.oliver24@outlook.com and he will pass them on.

Why We Need a New Council

Why We Need a New Council

Our candidate Nick Oliver explains why he believes we need new leadership in Northumberland County Council after the election in May.

As we head towards the County Council Elections in May it’s clear that the people of Corbridge and the Tyne Valley would benefit from a change in control at Northumberland County Council. Our council is controlled by Labour members from the South East of the county propped up by a few independents who vote with them on just about everything. Events in recent weeks have shown that this joint administration has little regard for the people of the Tyne Valley. Here are a few examples from recent weeks of knee-jerk announcements, policies decisions and blunders:-

  • The Labour leader announces a plan to merge our High Schools in Hexham and Haydon Bridge this September and then build a school with enough capacity to house the pupils in 3 years time. The Government blocks it but they still take it to cabinet for ratification.
  • New cycle lanes are installed on the Newcastle Road into Corbridge without informing or consulting with our County Councillor or our Parish Council. Local opposition is strong so they “consult” without the option of removing them.
  • Car parking in Hexham – despite County Councillors in Hexham calling for more parking for years and being ignored as we approach the election the Labour leader suddenly announces a new multi-storey car park for Hexham. No-one knows where it’s going to be or when it will be built. We will see more vague promises like this as we approach the election.
  • Most decisions affecting Tyndale used to be made by Tynedale District Council and whilst I’m not advocating a return to another tier of elected members I do believe that current system is not working because the Area Committees lack teeth. I attended my first West Area Committee meeting last week and was disappointed that it was little more than a Party Political broadcast by the Chief Executive for the Labour group. Much of the development work the Council does is carried out by it’s wholly owned subsidiary ARCH and I understand its’ Board is reluctant to face proper scrutiny at Area Committees. Last week the Chief Exec claimed that the West gets its’ fair share of investment but this is not supported by their own figures.
  • The Council recently announced plans to close the East Centre in Prudhoe and in only a few days later were forced into an embarrassing U-turn. The lack of consultation ahead of making the original decision meant they had under-estimated the angry reaction which forced them into an embarrassing climb-down.