flood-risk

Wednesday, 14 August 2019

August Sussex Local article









Interesting times at Arun District Council, we the 
Conservative opposition are setting the pace and 
challenging a number of bewildering decisions as 
well as holding the LibDem Cabinet’s feet to the fire.

I have met with the Green Councillors and am working 
closely on some shared objectives, cross party working 
is something new , but although we don’t agree on some 
fairly important things, we do agree on a lot and I’m 
pleased to work with them.

At a recent Overview Committee we were vigorous in 
asking questions and putting down recommendations. 
I managed to get the Recycling target increased from 
40% to 50% (This was passed unanimously) and the 
building target for Councils own  stock increased from
 25 homes per annum to 35 homes per annum. 
(This would have been unanimous Independents and 
Greens supported it but 3 Lib Dem councillors voted 
against this).

Lib Dem’s in the past have been notorious for not turning 
up to meetings, it has been discovered that some Cabinet 
members had not met with their officers a good month 
after taking up position, bearing in mind they are being 
paid a Special responsibility allowance to be Cabinet 
members and should be doing the job properly.

We have also heard some worrying things that may happen, 
there is the desire by the Lib Dem Cabinet to re-open the 
Local plan, this could cost between £1M-£2M and suck up 
valuable  officer time for the next 3-4years.

There was also a large scale consultation about to take 
place in Bognor Regis regarding The Sunken Gardens
redevelopment,  The LibDems want to cancel the 
consultation at a potential cost of £320k, my groups 
attitude is that the consultation should go ahead as there 
is nothing wrong with asking people want they want.

With the Cabinet system you should have collective 
responsibility where as the Cabinet speak with one voice, 
but the Lib Dem’s deputy leader Francis Oppler has voted 
against the leader in a  recent meeting giving the impression 
of a Cabinet in chaos. Francis Oppler has desires to be leader 
and appears to be undermining the Leader James Walsh 
for personal ambition.

The first real Full Council is on the 17th of July, I write this 
column around the 7th of the month, so I  will report the 
outcome of that meeting in next months article.

Until next month,  Paul Dendle is one of the Arundel & 
Walberton Ward members and is the spokesperson for the 
Conservative group on the economy. His email is 
cllr.paul.dendle@arun.gov.uk

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