The week started with the Council finally getting a phone installed into my home. It only took 6 months to do. The new number is 01257 423212.
On Wednesday we had the Full Council meeting. The important issue of the meeting was ratifying the Core Strategy. It was good that the Council agreed and backed the residents of Standish for not allowing the 2500 houses to be built in Standish. The Labour Cllr for Standish Emma McGurrin agreed but said she wanted more Council houses in Standish, which seeing as we said we didn't want any more mass housing building going on in Standish that she now wants to build more Council houses. I disagree as we do not need any more houses in Standish.
Another issue was that Labour spoke for nearly 45 minutes calling the Tories for the new benefit cuts that are coming in. What Labour did not say was that Wigan Council is working in partnership with the Tory led Coalition Government on these cuts and bringing in the new cuts 6 month earlier than other Council's, as Wigan Council have volunteered to be a pilot for the scheme. Labour went quiet when I raised this and they didn't know what to say. During the 45 min rants Labour Cllr Hunt compared the Tories to the Nazi's, which to me is a disgrace. People might not agree with the policies of the Government but to compare them to the Nazi's is a disgraceful act, especially given that at the end of the week we had Remembrance Sunday.
Also I seconded a motion to have the Council meeting recorded and put on the Council website. This, I believe would help residents see what their local cllr says, does and how they vote. Labour voted for the motion and then realised that they had done a mistake and then asked for the vote again. I believe this is against the rules and the vote should stand. They just keep making it up as they go along.
I have been helping some residents who want to turn a piece of waste land into allotments. Wigan Council want to turn this into more Council housing, so I guess this is why Labour Cllr Emma McGurrin wants more Council houses. I think it is a shame that the Council want yet more houses. These Council houses, if built, will not be used for residents in Standish but for people out of the area. So often the Council just take out of Standish and very rarely gives back and I think it would be a great opportunity to let these residents have some allotments on the waste land rather than Council houses.
I held my bi-weekly surgery at the Library on Saturday morning and I had to extend it by 20 minutes as there a number of residents turned up over various issues, including two letting me know that some youths tried to set fire to the new equipment at Ashfield. We are asking for more patrols from the PCSO and the police to keep an eye on this as this new equipment is a great asset to the area and for the Children of Standish.
Myself and Cllr George Fairhurst are working on a new play facility in Standish and there was a meeting with some officials from the Council this week who do not seem to be against the idea so we are hopeful that we can get this agreed soon.
Finally, I was honoured to lay the wreath on behalf of the Council at Standish today. It was great to see the large turnout from residents attending the walk and service at the cenotaph and remembering our service men and women, past and present.