Monday night Planning Advisory Panel where we had discussions as to where houses could go and lots more on numbers.....getting closer to agreement...a big question was whether West of Stonehouse should be removed and held in reserve...numbers are less than they were but not loads less. Aston Down looks like it could be pulled from housing and go just to a small amount of economic development....we'll see it still has to be deliverable but this plan would rule out Callowell and Ruscombe Valley from development.
Tories put forward what many in the opposition saw as a badly researched motion to reduce the number of councillors to save money...even the question was based on research done 2 years ago with a badly worded leading question....this really is not the time as we move to committee system (with so many significant changes) to assess impact of reducing councillors - where it was done at the County they cut 10 councillors making wards very large...I understand they then realised they hadn't enough councillors to run committees so they got rid of budget and performance committee....perhaps because Sarah Lunnon was so good at using it to ask questions? Anyhow I am not convinced there would be a money saving; already allowances to Exec members has been cut and other measures looked at...it would also reduce diversity of those standing, make links to communities stronger, increase workloads so that only those with private incomes or retired can consider being a councillor...I could go on but now is not the time for this measure.
A question to Council from Tories was why did the flag at Ebley Mill not get hung at half mast on Thatchers funeral day....well there was no directive from Government, it's not been done for previous PMs and in any case to do so for someone who created so much division in our society would in my view be wrong. The reactions in the press in last days show how strong such feelings remain...
Good news re Slad Valley - see Andy Read's blog here. Greens John Marjoram and Simon Pickering on behalf of Molly Scott Cato both spoke out against the develeopment.