Thursday, October 25, 2012

Chair of the South East Area Committee Labour councillor Ian Swithenbank put forward a motion to recommend the Liberal executive defer the decision until further public consultation had been carried out and further options for potential sites with less impact on residents had been explored.

Press Release

Residents win first round in Blyth gypsy site battle

Decision deferred until further consultation carried out

A decision to site a proposed gypsy transit camp in the Kitty Brewster/Cowpen area in Blyth was considered by Northumberland County Council inaugural ‘Petitions Committee’ on Wed (24/10/12) and was put on hold after councillors decided the council hadn’t carried out enough consultation of people in the area.

Husband and wife Councillor team, Grant and Susan Davey who represent the wards accompanied the residents who had presented a 677 name petition asking the council to reconsider its decision and Blyth Town Council added its weight to the push to make the council think again.

Chair of the South East Area Committee Labour councillor Ian Swithenbank put forward a motion to recommend the Liberal executive defer the decision until further public consultation had been carried out and further options for potential sites with less impact on residents had been explored.

Local Councillor Grant Davey said

‘We’re pleased that the committee recognised what we’ve been saying throughout. The council hadn’t consulted with the community involved and tried to ‘bulldoze’ a decision through which would have had far reaching ramifications on residents. We think it is right that the council should consider other sites across Northumberland. As local councillors and in conjunction with Blyth Town Council we’ve sought to work with the residents and make the council listen and this pause is an opportunity for Jeff Reid and his Liberal executive to review all available locations across the whole of the county not just Blyth’.    


Monday, October 22, 2012

On Wednesday 24th October 2012 at County Hall Morpeth a petitions committee is to be held at 09:15am prior to The Administrations Executive Committee at 10:30am. A petition has been submitted, signed by 677 residents of Cowpen and Kitty Brewster against the siting of a proposed Gypsy and Roma Travellers site at either Coniston Road or Ennerdale Road, Riverside Industrial Estate, Cowpen, Blyth.

Labour backs residents in gypsy site wrangle

Councillor’s welcome ‘massive show of local feeling’.

On Wednesday 24th October 2012 at County Hall Morpeth a petitions committee is to be held at 09:15am prior to The Administrations Executive Committee at 10:30am. A petition has been submitted, signed by 677 residents of Cowpen and Kitty Brewster against the siting of a proposed Gypsy and Roma Travellers site at either Coniston Road or Ennerdale Road, Riverside Industrial Estate, Cowpen, Blyth.

Local Councillor Grant Davey spoke to the press following the report to Northumberland’s South East Area Committee on 12th September and said

‘The County Council needs to ensure they build up the confidence of local people that this maximum 21day stay transit site will be both well managed and that travellers will be encouraged not to illegally camp in South East Northumberland once their stopover period expires’.

Councillor's Susan and Grant Davey will attend the petitions committee to assist and support the petitioners from their wards through the process.

Councillor Susan Davey of Cowpen ward said

‘Since the Area Committee meeting on 12th September Northumberland County Council have sat back and done nothing. I am disappointed for local residents but not surprised by the Administration’s actions that the time has not been put to better use to explain the reasons for choosing this site above all others, particularly the site preferred by Blyth Town Councillors behind NCC's waste disposal facility at Bebside".

Councillor Grant Davey of Kitty Brewster ward said

‘The council chose a number of sites and wheedled them out using the DCLG scoring criteria, most are situated on industrial land in Blyth. They were also offered a site at Barrington Road Industrial Estate by the landowner but turned it down because it was industrial land. They mustn't realise that industrial estates in Blyth are also situated on industrial land!" “I hope the committee take notice of local feelings and instruct the Administrations Executive accordingly as a report has already been prepared that recommends only one site, that at Ennerdale Road. They are asked to move the issue to the planning stage and change this industrial land to Housing Land. It’s my view that the council must listen to the strength of feeling and take this into account or they will stand accused of riding roughshod over local views’.

People claiming this benefit will have to able to pass a test of identification.



                                                                                        
Ian Swithenbank, Chairperson
Grant Davey, Leader
Val Tyler, Deputy
Robert Arckless, Secretary

County Hall
Morpeth
Northumberland NE61 2EF
Telephone (01670) 533000
Fax (01670) 533072


Press Release
Wake up call for universal benefit ‘shake-up’
Residents urged to sign up or they may miss out
Northumberland Labour Group has joined the list of organisations concerned about the effects of the coalition government flagship universal credit benefit shake-up will have on the county 
It is not just a change of name for benefits; it is the replacement of the whole benefit structure.  For instance, workers reliant on benefits to top up their income or pay for housing will have to demonstrate they are seeking to earn more or face a sliding scale of cuts to their income. This will be defined by an earnings threshold, the equivalent of a 35-hour week on the national minimum wage (currently £212.80). Workers who fall below this threshold will have to demonstrate they are actively looking for additional hours, an additional job, or new, job.
Residents in Northumberland who may be in receipt or may be entitled to a range of benefits are being urged to sign up to the electoral register as new changes introduced by the coalition government are being introduced to parliament.
Universal Credit will be debated in the House of Commons during the autumn period. The Coalition Governments aim of this benefit is to make work pay by ensuring that people are better off for each hour they work and every pound they earn. People claiming this benefit will have to able to pass a test of identification.
Northumberland Labour Group Leader Grant Davey said
"People won’t be entitled to Universal Credit if they are unable to prove who they are and what they are doing at all times. We want to make sure people are aware that the government are changing the benefits system
One of the ways people can be easily identified is from the Electoral Register, People need to ensure they make contact with their council or if they don't have internet access, attend a local community centre with IT access to ensure they get themselves on the register as soon as possible.

Notes to editors
Organisations who have concerns about Universal Credit
  • CAB,
  • Women’s Refuge,
  • Shelter and
  • Age UK

Liberal Cabinet member Neil Bradbury has already presented outline plans to replace five leisure trusts that run council leisure services with one ‘outsourced’ provider and Labour are seeking answers about these privatisation moves. A controversial idea put forward by Councillor Bradbury was to ‘use the soon to be built £20m Ashington Leisure and Community Centre as a ‘giveaway sweetener’ to bring in an external provider.

Press Release

Council accused of ‘secret privatisation’.
Leisure services in line for sell off despite promise to halt privatisation moves

Labour politicians in Northumberland have called for the Liberal administration to ‘come clean’ over moves to privatise leisure centres and services across the county after the county’s ruling Liberal executive announced plans to ‘cave in’ to Labour and Tory pressure over plans to privatise ‘unspecified services’.

Liberal Cabinet member Neil Bradbury has already presented outline plans to replace five leisure trusts that run council leisure services with one ‘outsourced’ provider and Labour are seeking answers about these privatisation moves. A controversial idea put forward by Councillor Bradbury was to ‘use the soon to be built £20m Ashington Leisure and Community Centre as a ‘giveaway sweetener’ to bring in an external provider.

The authority has confirmed that Councillor Bradbury’s controversial plans are still on-going and are separate to the leadership’s pledge to halt wholesale privatisation.

Labour Leader Grant Davey said

‘This is a worrying move by the Liberals to continue with a backdoor privatisation while assuring residents that they haven’t made any decisions about outsourcing county services. This move by Councillor Bradbury raises very serious concerns over value for money as he has already indicated on record that he favours using the new £20m Ashington Leisure centre as a ‘sweetener’ to an outside provider. The council have already indicated they’re borrowing the money for Ashington leisure centre only to give the centre away. That can’t be good economic sense and coming on the back of additional £1.53m the council have so far spent on their abortive privatisation programme, we’re calling for assurances from Councillor Bradbury and his leader that the leisure privatisation will be stopped too until at least May 2013. Labour is calling for the Liberals to stop this rush and consider looking at our proposal to support a creation of a ‘single trust’ to cover the whole county.


Guy Opperman, Peter Jackson, Phil Butler and Anne Marie Trevelyan have never been this silent before and we say they must back a ‘zero tolerance’ bullying policy. It’s just simply not good enough to say this was a ‘disagreement between two members’ when the report says it was a serious case of bullying. Senior Tories simply have to condemn these actions by Councillor Hutchinson’

Press Release

Bullying row continues

Calls for senior Tories to condemn Northumberland Tory bullying


As the row over the failure of Northumberland Tories to tackle or even acknowledge a damning report issued by Northumberland County Council Standards Board which found a senior Northumberland Tory guilty of bullying a female colleague and bringing his office into disrepute continues, Northumberland Labour group have called for senior Tories in the county to ‘make their position clear’.

It has emerged that Northumberland Tories including Guy Opperman and Berwick PCC Anne Marie Trevelyan, along with the Tory group on the council have failed to condemn the bullying behaviour of Councillor Ian Hutchinson of Haltwhistle.

Labour are now calling for senior Tories including Northumbria Police candidate Phil Butler to condemn Councillor Hutchinson’s actions and to set out clearly that they will follow a ‘zero-tolerance’ policy of bullying. Labour claims this matter is bringing ‘politics into disrepute in the county’. 

Labour group leader on Northumberland County Council Grant Davey said

‘Senior Tories in the North East are failing ‘the leadership test’. It’s time they condemned the actions and behaviour of their Councillor Ian Hutchinson instead of brushing it under the carpet. Bullying shouldn’t be tolerated and their failure to lead on this issue raises serious questions over their attitudes to bullying in general. They must make their position clear. Guy Opperman, Peter Jackson, Phil Butler and Anne Marie Trevelyan have never been this silent before and we say they must back a ‘zero tolerance’ bullying policy. It’s just simply not good enough to say this was a ‘disagreement between two members’ when the report says it was a serious case of bullying. Senior Tories simply have to condemn these actions by Councillor Hutchinson’. 

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Councillor guilty of bullying female colleague

Councillor guilty of bullying female colleague
By BRIAN TILLEY
Last updated at 15:41, Monday, 15 October 2012
THE political career of a leading Tynedale councillor appears in ruins after he humiliated and intimidated a female colleague.
Bullying victim: Anne Dale  was the target of an unreasonable and unjustified personal attack by Ian Hutchinson (right).
A council watchdog found the behaviour of Coun. Ian Hutchinson, who represents Haltwhistle on Northumberland County Council, towards fellow Tory councillor Anne Dale, from Stocksfield, amounted to bullying.
Coun. Hutchinson has now resigned as chairman of the council’s west area planning committee – but only after hearing that the council’s standards committee had recommended he be sacked and retrained.
Members of the public and council officers were shocked when Coun. Hutchinson repeatedly shouted Mrs Dale down at a planning committee meeting in June last year.
She was visibly confused and upset, and took no part in further debates at the meeting.
In a damning verdict, an all-party council standards committee found that Coun. Hutchinson had raised his voice in an aggressive and intimidatory manner, with the intention of demeaning Coun. Mrs Dale when she tried to ask questions on two planning applications.
The report said: “Coun. Hutchinson’s behaviour towards Coun. Mrs Dale at the meeting on June 15 was an unreasonable and excessive personal attack on her, for which he had no justification and which went beyond the concept of firm chairing.
“The attack was carried out in a public meeting when members would be expected to be acutely aware of the need for them to behave responsibly and respectfully.
“Coun. Hutchinson demonstrated a lack of respect not only in the relation to the content of his exchanges with Coun. Mrs Dale but also in relation to the tone and volume of his voice, which was aggressive and too loud to be justifiable in the prevailing circumstances.”
The committee also found that Coun. Hutchinson had behaved unreasonably by losing his temper and shouting at Mrs Dale at a planning site investigation in 2009.
He compounded his poor behaviour by sending an email to a council officer containing a further “unreasonable and personal attack” on Mrs Dale.
The committee found there was nothing in the way that Mrs Dale conducted herself at the meeting that justified Coun. Hutchinson’s treatment of her.
The committee recommended that Coun. Hutchinson be removed from the chairmanship of the west area planning committee for the remainder of the council’s term of office, which ends next April.
However, on Wednesday, Coun. Hutchinson jumped before he was pushed by resigning as committee chairman.
Ironically, the ramifications of the row could have been kept out of the public eye, as Mrs Dale originally only complained to the Conservative group.
However, while accepting that Coun. Hutchinson had been “too robust” at the June planning committee, the group found there was no evidence of persistent bullying or intimidation.
Conservative group leader Coun. Peter Jackson ruled no further action should be taken – and only then did Mrs Dale decided to take the matter to the council’s own watchdog, the standards committee.
The standards hearing was the latest stage of a damaging rift between Mrs Dale and the Hexham Constituency Conservative Association.
Last year, she was dropped as a potential candidate by the Tories for next year’s county elections – despite the fact she has the biggest majority of any councillor in the district.
Although she refuses to publicly commit herself, it is thought likely she will stand as an independent against the official Tory candidate – and her huge personal vote could well see her win the seat.
Mrs Dale has always been seen as one of the more industrious Tory councillors, both on the former Tynedale Council – to which she was elected in 1995 – and on the unitary county council, of which she was a founder member.
She said this week that was “saddened” that the complaint had not been settled within the Tory group.
In a statement afterwards, she said: “Coun. Hutchinson treated me in an unacceptable manner in a public forum.
“I welcome the findings and the thoroughness and impartiality in which this matter has been dealt with.
“I will always work for and support the rights of the electorate.
A statement on behalf of the Conservative group said Coun. Hutchinson had decided to resign as chairman of the west planning committee, as he felt continuing in the role of chairman would distract from the important work of the committee.
The statement went on: “This unfortunate issue has been the result of a long running dispute between two individuals.
“It has been dealt with by cross-party committee and is not a party political matter.
“Coun. Hutchinson and Mrs Dale remain Conservative councillors and will continue their important work in support of constituents.”
Coun. Hutchinson himself declined to comment, other than to say: “I cannot believe the committee’s verdict.”
First published at 09:09, Monday, 15 October 2012
Published by
http://www.hexhamcourant.co.uk
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HUTCHINSON SHOULD RESIGN HE IS A DISGRACE

Northumberland County Councillor found guilty of bullying colleague

Councillor Anne Dale and Councillor Ian Hutchinson (inset)
A SENIOR Conservative councillor has been found guilty of bullying a female party colleague and launching an “unreasonable and excessive personal” attack on her at a public meeting.
A formal investigation has concluded that Coun Ian Hutchinson breached Northumberland County Council’s code of conduct in his behaviour towards Coun Anne Dale.
His actions included losing his temper and shouting at her, acting in an aggressive and intimidatory manner towards her and failing to treat her with respect.
The inquiry also found Coun Hutchinson tried to demean Coun Dale in front of everyone at a meeting, and showed a lack of restraint in sending an “irresponsible” email to a council officer which underlined his attitude to her generally.
The council’s standards committee has ruled that Coun Hutchinson bullied Coun Dale at a planning meeting in June last year.
It concluded that he made an unreasonable and excessive personal attack on her, for which he had no justification and which went beyond the concept of firm chairing.
It described his behaviour as offensive, intimidating and humiliating, leaving her feeling shocked and confused, and as likely to be detrimental to her confidence, especially as members of the public were present.
The standards committee has recommended to the council that Coun Hutchinson should be stripped of his position as chairman of the west area planning committee, until the next elections in May 2013, as punishment. It also recommends he be given appropriate training.
Yesterday Coun Hutchinson, who represents Haltwhistle, said he was resigning as chairman of the planning committee with immediate effect. Coun Dale, who represents the Stocksfield and Broomhaugh ward, has not been selected by the Conservatives as a candidate for next year’s council elections.
Yesterday she said she has not yet decided whether to seek re-election under a different banner.
Referring her to her complaint against Coun Hutchinson, she said the whole experience had left her deeply upset.
“As an elected member of the county council, and a member of the west planning committee, it is my duty and legal right to ensure that all planning applications are dealt with within the legal planning framework, to ensure that the integrity of the planning system and the reputation of the council is upheld,” she said.
“On this occasion, Coun Hutchinson attempted to prevent me from asking relevant questions concerning two planning applications, and treated me in an unacceptable manner in a public forum.
“I felt strongly that I was unable to exercise my rights on behalf of the residents of Northumberland. I therefore welcome the investigating officer and committee’s findings, and the thoroughness and impartiality which this matter has been dealt with. ”
Last night Coun Hutchinson said: “I am deeply shocked and hurt that the standards committee has upheld the complaint against me. It is with regret that I have resigned as chairman of the west area planning committee.
“I will continue to serve the residents of Haltwhistle division, and the people of Northumberland, to the very best of my ability.
“I do not accept the report of the standards committee, nor do I recognise the description of my behaviour that it includes, and I’m considering my options accordingly.”


Read More http://www.journallive.co.uk/north-east-news/todays-news/2012/10/12/northumberland-county-councillor-found-guilty-of-bullying-colleague-61634-32015662/#ixzz29dmm1VqB

Ennerdale Road in Blyth to house gypsy and travelling families

Ennerdale Road in Blyth to house gypsy and travelling families



An aerial view of Blyth
An aerial view of Blyth
A NEW temporary site to house travellers and help tackle the problem of unauthorised encampments is set to be developed in Northumberland’s biggest town.
The £311,000 transit site for gypsy, Roma and travelling families is proposed on land at Ennerdale Road on the outskirts of Blyth.
Next week the county council’s Liberal Democrat executive is expected to confirm the choice of the site, which has emerged as the most suitable after a total of 14 were originally identified and examined.
The council will use £311,000 in funding from the Homes and Communtties Agency to develop the eight-pitch site, on land bordering Blyth’s industrial estates.
A report to next week’s meeting says providing the official transit site will reduce the cost of managing unauthorised travellers’ encampment, both in terms of staff time and clear-up costs.
A row erupted a year ago after the county council moved an extended travelling family on to part of the Wansbeck Riverside Park in Ashington as a temporary measure. Almost 700 local people signed a petition amid concerns that the 17-acre park could become a permanent transit site for travelling families.
However, the travellers and their six caravans moved off the site after staying there for a few months.
Blyth Town Council has voiced a number of concerns about the proposal to develop Ennerdale Road. It has questioned why a transit site is not being built in the west of the county, and fears that the facility could lead to the loss of current or potential jobs in Blyth. The town council also has concerns that travellers might remain on the site permanently.
Daljit Lally, corporate director of adult services and housing, says in her report to the executive that the site is being proposed in  Northumberland because that is where the greatest need is, based on existing migratory routes.
She said: “A properly managed site should avoid it being used as a permanent site and causing disruption to local businesses. The planning process will give an opportunity for local concerns to be considered, and the project team can consider further publicity to explain the proposals to local residents and businesses.”
A planning application will be prepared and submitted after the executive chooses the preferred site.

Related stories



Read More http://www.journallive.co.uk/north-east-news/todays-news/2012/10/18/ennerdale-road-in-blyth-to-house-gypsy-and-travelling-families-61634-32052894/?campaign=Newcastle_email_journalliveemail:20121018#ixzz29dk6vMs1

The word the Tories are afraid to say sorry

Sir –
An apology at the very least

After reading your story on the guilty verdict of Haltwhistle’s Conservative Councillor Ian Hutchinson, its gob smacking that one simple word is missing from the story.
Neither the Conservative party nor Councillor Hutchinson felt it necessary to apologise for his shocking actions highlighted in the report which is a disgrace in itself.
It seems ‘sorry’ is the hardest word in the case of Northumberland Conservatives and Ian Hutchinson.
 I noted that Mrs Dale has been deselected by her party and one would hope that was not linked with her brave decision to ignore Conservative Leader Peter Jackson’s pleas not to rock the boat and to make sure that bullying is confronted head on. Her decision makes stark contrast with Councillor Jackson’s attempts to sweep Hutchinson’s actions under the carpet.  
For anybody to seek to intimidate or bully someone is shocking enough but a senior county councillor chairing a high powered committee? That really beggars belief.
It is surely not reasonable to carry on, as he is as quoted in the Hexham Courant and blindly state ‘he’s done nothing wrong’. He should accept his punishment and do the decent thing and apologise to the people he’s let down and to the person who was bullied by him, Councillor Dale.
If he continues to act as though he’s in denial then what does that say about the Conservative party in Northumberland? Does this mean they accept his actions and therefore condone bullying or will they act to force Councillor Hutchinson to face up to his shortcomings?
Make no mistake, people are watching and waiting for actions not words from Northumberland Conservatives and Ian Hutchinson.

Monday, October 08, 2012

Council accused of ‘secret privatisation’

                                                                                        
Ian Swithenbank, Chairperson
Grant Davey, Leader
Val Tyler, Deputy
Robert Arckless, Secretary

County Hall
Morpeth
Northumberland NE61 2EF
Telephone (01670) 533000
Fax (01670) 533072

Press Release

Council accused of ‘secret privatisation’.
Leisure services in line for sell off despite promise to halt privatisation moves

Labour politicians in Northumberland have called for the Liberal administration to ‘come clean’ over moves to privatise leisure centres and services across the county after the county’s ruling Liberal executive announced plans to ‘cave in’ to Labour and Tory pressure over plans to privatise ‘unspecified services’.

Liberal Cabinet member Neil Bradbury has already presented outline plans to replace five leisure trusts that run council leisure services with one ‘outsourced’ provider and Labour are seeking answers about these privatisation moves. A controversial idea put forward by Councillor Bradbury was to ‘use the soon to be built £20m Ashington Leisure and Community Centre as a ‘giveaway sweetener’ to bring in an external provider.

The authority has confirmed that Councillor Bradbury’s controversial plans are still on-going and are separate to the leadership’s pledge to halt wholesale privatisation.

Labour Leader Grant Davey said

‘This is a worrying move by the Liberals to continue with a backdoor privatisation while assuring residents that they haven’t made any decisions about outsourcing county services. This move by Councillor Bradbury raises very serious concerns over value for money as he has already indicated on record that he favours using the new £20m Ashington Leisure centre as a ‘sweetener’ to an outside provider. The council have already indicated they’re borrowing the money for Ashington leisure centre only to give the centre away. That can’t be good economic sense and coming on the back of additional £1.53m the council have so far spent on their abortive privatisation programme, we’re calling for assurances from Councillor Bradbury and his leader that the leisure privatisation will be stopped too until at least May 2013. Labour is calling for the Liberals to stop this rush and consider looking at our proposal to support a creation of a ‘single trust’ to cover the whole county.

Jeff Reid doubles the council debt-This decision contributed to a doubling of council debt to £595m since the Liberals took power in 2008

Ian Swithenbank, Chairperson
Grant Davey, Leader
Val Tyler, Deputy
Robert Arckless, Secretary

County Hall
Morpeth
Northumberland NE61 2EF
Telephone (01670) 533000
Fax (01670) 533072


Press Release

Fears over new ‘giveaway’ Leisure Centre in Ashington

Council to ‘borrow to build’ new leisure centre despite plans to ‘give it away’

Community groups and Labour community activists have raised concerns that the new £20m leisure and community centre is to be built on ‘the never-never’ after the Liberal administration pledged to borrow a further £80m to fund capital plans across the county.
Liberal Leader Jeff Reid and his junior colleague Neil Bradbury announced on Monday that ‘plans for the new £20m centre’ would be available for viewing on 12 Oct.
Yesterday’s meeting of Full Council was told that the council would be borrowing a further £80m to build facilities across the county. This decision contributed to a doubling of council debt to £595m since the Liberals took power in 2008.
Previously, Cabinet member in charge of Leisure Services, Neil Bradbury had revealed his plans to ‘outsource leisure services’ and to use the new £20m leisure centre in Ashington as a ‘giveaway sweetener to tempt private sector bidders’ to take over leisure facilities across the county.

Now campaigners have pledged to stop the ‘giveaway’ and are demanding answers from Liberals on the council on what has happened to the cash raised from the original sale of Ashington FC land and surrounding sites which was due to be earmarked for the new leisure centre.

Labour co-ordinator for the ‘#itsnotyourstogiveaway campaign Lynne Grimshaw said

‘Liberals have big questions to answer. Not only to the want to give away the leisure centre before it’s even built and a resident has passed through its doors, it now looks like they’re going to borrow the money. The centre is for the local community, not to be traded with some commercial giant for their profit. We’re concerned the people of Ashington are being sold down the River Wansbeck and the people of Northumberland will be paying for a leisure centre for years to come despite not owning it’. 





Notes for Editors

‘The November revision to the Treasury Management Policy Statement for 2011/12 included a £60 million increase to the borrowing limits, to bring current borrowing in line with capital financing requirement limits and to cover future capital schemes which include the Morpeth Northern Bypass, Ashington Leisure Centre and Morpeth Flood Defence’
Quote from Neil Bradbury email to Liberal Democrat activists in May 2012

“My strong preference is to use the lure of a brilliant new facility in Ashington as the starter of a contract, where we will appoint a preferred provider who will gradually take over the other centres, when the other provider’s contracts come to an end”

  • Members of the ‘#itsnotyourstogiveaway campaign are Lynne Grimshaw (Bothal) & Brian Gallagher (Haydon). Labour councillor’s Jim Lang (Seaton with Newbiggin West), Ken Parry (Hirst), Jimmy Sawyer (College), Tommy Wilson (Central) are also involved in the campaign.

Monday, October 01, 2012

Northumberland Tories who tabled an illegal motion are facing calls from another council to admit they got it wrong on a controversial motion seeking to ‘drastically cut renewable energy subsidies’ and ‘outlaw wind turbine developments illegally’ even in parts of Northumberland who may want them.


                   NORTHUMBERLAND LABOUR GROUP



                                                                                        
Ian Swithenbank, Chairperson
Grant Davey, Leader
Val Tyler, Deputy
Robert Arckless, Secretary

County Hall
Morpeth
Northumberland NE61 2EF
Telephone (01670) 533000
Fax (01670) 533072

Press Release
Tory Mayor called to condemn ‘illegal and ill judged’ Northumberland Tory motion
‘Northumberland Tories incompetence will damage jobs push’ Davey and Allan

Northumberland Tories who tabled an illegal motion are facing calls from another council to admit they got it wrong on a controversial motion seeking to ‘drastically cut renewable energy subsidies’ and ‘outlaw wind turbine developments illegally’ even in parts of Northumberland who may want them.
At the forthcoming meeting of  Tory run North Tyneside Council on Thurs 27 Sept, the Labour party group have tabled a motion calling for the council’s Tory elected mayor to ‘stand up for jobs on the North Bank of the Tyne Enterprise Zone’ and rein in Northumberland Tories deputy leader Glenn Sanderson who tabled the motion at County Hall last week.
The Labour motion at North Tyneside will also call for the Tory mayor, Linda Arkley to write to the North’s Tory MP’s, Guy Opperman (Hexham), James Wharton (Stockton South) and John Stephenson (Carlisle) urging them to publicly distance themselves from a letter signed by 106 MP’s including Mr Wharton calling for a damaging removal of subsidy from the emerging renewables industries and the Northumberland Motion.
The Northumberland motion tabled by Councillor Sanderson attracted wide spread criticism and led to 5 abstentions from Councillor Sanderson’s own group and led to his leader Councillor Peter Jackson being banned from the debate. In a separate incident, Councillor Jackson was revealed to have submitted at least two planning applications for wind turbines on his own land. The five Tory abstentions included the Chairman of the West Area Planning Committee, Councillor Ian Hutchinson and long serving Tory Terry Robson from Hexham.
Labour MP’s Ronnie Campbell and Ian Lavery have joined in to add their weight to the calls for Sanderson to withdraw his attack on the renewables industry. They previously released a joint comment which ‘accused Sanderson and the Tory group of undermining ‘Con/Dem’ attempts to attract jobs to the North East and of undermining local renewable energy businesses’.
Labour group leader’s Jim Allan and Grant Davey released their own joint comment ahead of the North Tyneside motion
‘The Elected Mayor in North Tyneside needs to distance herself from the actions of her own party in Northumberland and her Tory colleague in Stockton South, James Wharton MP who signed the letter to the Telegraph which we think sends out the wrong messages to potential investors in the North Bank of the Tyne Enterprise Zone. Northumberland Tories illegal and incompetent motion will damage the North East job push.
We’re calling for her to write to Councillor Peter Jackson and Councillor Glenn Sanderson and the Tory MP’s of the region to ask them to publicly back the renewable energy industries and to withdraw their support for the withdrawal of subsidies to the renewables industries.
The Northumberland Motion may have been illegal but it sent out the message that the Tory party in Northumberland wasn’t backing the North East LEP and we want to make sure Mayor Arkley sends a clear message that sort of political ‘gimmick’ isn’t on and doesn’t reflect Tory sentiment in North Tyneside’.

Notes To Editors
·        Attached Press Releases which include the Northumberland Motion - Conservative motion will ‘kill Northumberland jobs’
             Calls for Tory Leader to get a grip on ‘fractured party’
·        http://www.northtyneside.gov.uk/browse-display.shtml?p_ID=538217&p_subjectCategory=40