Sunday, 17 March 2013

It was nice to see the pledges from Peter Jackson in last weeks press, but of course everything he touches seems to turn into dust.

IN RESPONSE TO P JACKSONS STATEMENTS

It was nice to see the pledges from Peter Jackson in last weeks press, but of course everything he touches seems to turn into dust.

A week after the Council budget Berwick conservatives floated this promise on their web-site

'End the council tax discount on second homes and invest all of the money raised in tax on second homes in a  new generation of council housing for local families. It is unfair that people with two homes get a tax break when so many people cannot afford their first home.'

It seems a decent pledge, take the £4M from second home Council Tax Discounts and spend it building Council Houses, except that the budget which went through included the removal of the discount on second homes saving 175 jobs.

Peter Jackson on budget day put forward the Tory plan to introduce performance related pay for some employees, after the Council has had to spend tens of millions introducing a national agreement on equality and equal pay (Single Status)due to some peoples pay having performance related bonuses attached.

In his News article last week he is pledging 'new money' for highways repairs, by abstaining on the budget vote his team almost missed £6M of real 'New Money' for road repairs.

He is still spouting on about Wind Turbine regulations, something he didn't take any notice of when he applied twice to place some on his own land than lied about it.

He also still has to come clean about whether his team have agreed consensus opinion of planning matters surrounding Opencast and Wind Turbine planning applications, Northumberland's working population and commercial enterprise such as UK Coal and Border Wind need to know if Northumberland Tories wish to cut business off from expansion?

Northumberland Labour Group have worked up a plan to develop 1300 Affordable, Social and Intermediate homes over the next four years and have a program in place that doesn't rely on paying off staff or attacking their national terms and conditions. It will also kickstart Northumberland economy creating 500 Jobs in the construction sector, offer the opportunity for craft apprenticeships and safeguard 3000 jobs in the supply and retail sector.

Labour Group will also introduce free parking but wish to harvest local knowledge and work with Town and Parish Councils to ensure everyones views are taken into consideration.



Labour is aware of the diverse levels of wealth and poverty across Northumberland and how poverty is increasing through the Coalition Governments cuts and austerity measures. Labour also understands how easily approximately two thirds of its population can travel into the Tyne and Wear conurbation or Carlisle to spend. We want to keep our communities sustainable and increase tourism and trade from the conurbation. One of the ways to achieve this is free parking for all. We believe this is an income cut worth taking to assist Northumberland.
 Approximately half of Northumberland’s population live in the South East of the County with its mixture of all day free or two hour limited parking.



We will of course ask Town and Parish Councils to produce local parking plans. We will urge Parish Councils to come up with innovative solutions that see parking charges as a last resort, not the easiest fix.



Northumberland has a rapidly aging mobile population who can shop from Monday to Friday and it should be possible for some areas to remove or time limit parking on those days when pressure on space is reduced, or to produce seasonal parking plans that reflect the ebb and flow of tourist traffic in most our beautiful towns and villages.
Council has evidence that removing charges can increase casual retail trade in rural towns by two thirds we want local businesses to benefit from those changes.



Northumberland Labour County Council Candidate for Druridge Bay Ward Scott Dickinson said: “We can’t trust Northumberland Tories to safely manage our economy or help those in greatest need in Northumberland. They have simply taken Labour’s ideas and are trying to sell them as their own. It isn’t twelve moths since their place was for £15 per car per annum ‘free parking’ across the whole of the County. This latest pledge is just Councillor Jackson lips blowing in the wind.”

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