After news broke that Stoke Gifford Council would charge a parkrun group to use their parks, South Gloucestershire Lib Dem Councillor Claire Young said: “This is outrageous. The Tory council chair has said people can run in Stoke Gifford whenever they like – except now they can’t on a Saturday morning unless they bring their wallet. We should be encouraging physical activity, and finding ways to support community groups where people want to do things together. Not attacking them, and putting a price on fun.”
Crossways parents, pupils and staff celebrate the news that a zebra crossing will be built outside the school some time in the next 12 months. Cllrs Shirley Holloway, Maggie Tyrrell and Clare Fardell, (back right) joined the celebrations just after they were able to persuade Severnvale Area Forum on March 1st to allocate the funds to enable the crossing to be built.Read more
Tory-run South Gloucestershire council agreed to slash funding for its youth organisations today (Wednesday 2nd March).
At a fractious meeting of the Children & Young People committee, Liberal Democrat and Labour efforts to protect the funding went to no avail, as all 7 Tories voted to cut the money in half. With all 6 Liberal Democrat and Labour members voting for the youth services, any one Conservative could have swung the vote.
Liberal Democrat Councillor Ian Blair said: “I cannot countenance further cuts to the youth service budget. This is going to cause real tension in communities, and be detrimental to South Gloucestershire being ‘a great place to live and work’. The Tories have called this funding ‘unsustainable’ – but they’re using the money to pay for a ‘sustainable’ cut to the cost of a green bin! They chose to make the youth service unsustainable, to give a 50p tax cut to people with big gardens.”
Councillor Maggie Tyrrell added: “Since Krunch expanded our youth services in Thornbury, police have seen a dramatic reduction in low level crime. Youth services help people, at a time when they often want guidance from outside the family home. It’s ridiculous to cut such a service. The consequences will be horrific, and cost much more than properly funding the youth service in the first place!”
Last Saturday 20th February local Lib Dems in Thornbury manned an information stall in Thornbury High Street in support of the party's Stronger IN Europe Campaign.
Despite the drizzly weather there were a good number of people around who were pleased to take an information leaflet outlining some of the reasons why the Liberal Democrats believe Britain should stay within the European Union.Read more
Tories on South Glos took the shocking decision last night (Wednesday 17th Feb) to cut local people out of decision making.
Not only did they vote to scrap the Area Forums, where local councillors came together with residents, charities and action groups, they also handed more decisions over to unelected bureaucrats.
Liberal Democrat Cllr Claire Young said: “When services are being slashed and tough decisions made, it’s more important than ever that local people can get involved. Area Forums were a time when local people could hold both officials and elected councillors to account. We swapped views on budget proposals, made decisions on grant funding, debated traffic schemes. This was a vital way for local residents to have their say on what mattered in their area – but not anymore.”
“At the same time, the Tories are slashing the number of decisions made by elected councillors in public and handing more power to the unelected bureaucrats to make decisions behind closed doors. Local people won’t find out until they’re a done deal and it’s too late to have any say. We tried to amend this so we would have the opportunity to discuss some of the decisions in public, but the Tories wouldn’t hear of it. The only thing they want to do is stick their hands up when the leader tells them to. Nobody wins from this. Local government just became less democratic, less open, less transparent. That’s the Tory-run council for you.”
She added, “The proposals look like they were drawn up on the back of an envelope. They have no idea, for example, how giving each of the 70 councillors a tiny pot of money to give out as grants will work, but it’s hard to believe it won’t be more expensive to administer than handling them through 5 area forums. It’s not saving money, it’s just cutting local people out of the loop. We hope people will come along to the final forums to have their say.”