Colchester Conservatives have put People, Climate Change and Services at the heart of changes they want to make to the deeply flawed financial plans of the Lib/Lab rump collation to be discussed at the Council meeting, 13th February 2020.
With the collapse of the Coalition controlling the Town Hall which has forced the Lib Dem’s and Labour to run a minority administration, the Conservatives are pushing ahead with it’s people first policies.
The Conservatives' budget amendments are the first step towards finishing the Lib-Dem and Labour council that focuses on over-development and taxpayer funded vanity projects rather than front line services, infrastructure and our climate change emergency.
Conservative Deputy Leader, Cllr Lewis Barber, said: “This is our chance to show the people that we are the only Party of change and in May residents have the opportunity to vote for a Conservative Council were we pledge to clean up Colchester, get Colchester moving and make our town safe again."
The Conservatives have put forward four amendments that will truly tackle Climate Change, prevent even more frittering away taxpayers’ hard earned money on silly projects and helps some of the most vulnerable people through the Citizen’s Advice Bureau.
The budget debate takes place on Thursday 13th February at 6pm at Colchester Town Hall.
That the recommendations contained in draft minute 412 of the Cabinet meeting of 29 January 2020 and the recommendations contained in the reports from Assistant Director of Corporate and Improvement Services entitled “Precept and Council Tax Levels 2020/21” and “Supplementary Budget Report 2020/21” be approved and adopted subject to:-
(i) Proposer: Councillor Davidson
The addition of the following words at the end of the recommendation: “and that it is Council’s opinion that the target of carbon neutrality by 2030 will not be achieved unless climate emergency is promoted as the single most important issue in the budget, which as it stands, is significantly defective in that it omits a robust and transparent prioritisation and costing of each and every issue identified in sections 3 to 6 of the Climate Emergency Action Plan.”
(ii) Proposer: Councillor Dundas
The addition of the following words at the end of the recommendation relating to the budgetary provision for the Local Plan: “That the budgetary provision of any funds to North Essex Garden Communities (NEGC) in 2020/21 and 2021/22 set out in Paragraph 6.14 of the Cabinet Report of January 29 2020 will only be allowed following a further vote and approval in Full Council.”
(iii) Proposer: Councillor Willetts
The addition of the following words at the end of the recommendation : “and Council notes that, with the exception of the contribution to the Local Highways Panel, the Towns Fund projects, and to St Mark Community Centre, the budgetary provision for the 17 New Strategic Priorities lack focus on our climate change emergency and infrastructure and are not rigorously prioritised or costed. Accordingly, apart from the three exceptions above, the capital and revenue financial provision in the 2020/1 budget for the New Strategic Priorities is removed and placed in reserves. This will protect taxpayer money and ensure Full Council properly scrutinises how taxpayer money is spent.”
(iv) Proposer: Councillor Barber
The addition of the following words at the end of the recommendation relating to Better Colchester Communications: “and that no budgetary provision is made for Better Colchester Communication, instead allocating £75,000 to restore the Council’s grant to Colchester Citizens Advice, and the remainder being placed in reserves.”