Wednesday, 28 January 2009

Jan 28th 09

It’s been one of those hectic days where it’s only now when it’s finally quiet I can find a few minutes to put thoughts to paper and muse over the things that I’ve done today. I’ve never been one to keep a diary in the past but there’s something strangely cathartic about bashing out my thoughts in a Blog.

I spent the morning catching up on emails, the afternoon looking at the proposed closure of Wessex Place and the evening in Comberton at what can best be described as a lively discussion over the two proposed sites for affordable housing.

But what has really made me think was an email from one of my constituents unhappy at the recently announced Council Tax rises. I don’t have a glib answer and I’m putting it out there just as food for thought for my political colleagues of all persuasions and parties.

This person wrote to both my Conservative opponent and I, prior to the by-election in November, about our thoughts on proposed Council Tax rises. Now that the Council have announced their Council Tax rises and the Lib Dem Group have made our own recommendations, I’ve been back in contact with this person to give them an update.

Their reply: “If I write to my Liberal Democrat councillor, I am told that it is the fault of the Conservative majority, and she can do nothing about it. If I write to the Conservative Council, I am told it is the fault of Labour government for not providing sufficient central funding, and they can do nothing about it. If I write to my Conservative MP, it takes three months to get a similar response………….. In short, everyone points to everyone else, and I am left feeling disillusioned with politics and politicians, not to mention considerably poorer as a result! If there were any way that I could effectively make my views count, I would leap on it like a shot.”

Well there is!

When you find that going through the usual channels doesn’t work – and sadly sometimes it doesn’t – all I can do is urge you to use your right to turn up and put us on the spot at full Council Meetings. You need to give 14 days notice prior to a meeting, but you elect us and you have the right to hold us accountable!

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