Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Police respond to Labour misuse of resources

Following complaints from Liberal Democrats in Redcar constituency, the Acting Chief Constable of Cleveland is to issue guidance to about the importance of not involving police officers in election campaigns.
This follows photographs published on social media of Labour council candidates and the Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Redcar appearing alongside uniformed police officers.
The Acting Chief Constable replied to the complaints, saying that he was “writing to candidates making it clear that they must not use such pictures in their campaign material.”
Labour should know that this is a misuse of public money and should not be putting pressure on the police to pose for their publications. Labour’s candidate Ms Turley shows a lack of mature understanding of the need for our police force to avoid being placed in a position where their integrity may be questioned.
As an agent and candidate at many Parliamentary and Council Elections in the past I was always told that in no circumstances could the local police be seen in photographs with election candidates.

It is only a couple of weeks ago when Ms Turley Tweeted a faked photograph of her Lib Dem opponents.
As a ward councillor concerned about anti-social behaviour problems, which appear to be escalating on the estate currently being re-developed at the junction of Roseberry Road and Mersey Road, I find it extremely annoying when local officers say they are too busy to attend meetings of the Neighbourhood Action Partnerships
These take place in each Council ward and the police often say they are too stretched to attend them all. Yet they can spare time to be seen around and be photographed with Labour candidates seeking election.
A happy smiling group photograph showing the Labour parliamentary candidate for Redcar, Labour council election candidates in Dormanstown and local police officers was published on Facebook along with a caption announcing the selection of Labour's candidates for Dormanstown Ward.

Friday, 20 February 2015

Lib Dems celebrate Ormesby housing decision

Redcar Constituency Liberal Democrats are celebrating this week following the rejection of intrusive housing plans at Longbank Farm, Ormesby.

The application for 320 houses received widespread objections from local residents, councillors and business and was refused during a planning meeting on Thursday.

Ian Swales MP commented:

“This is a great result for the residents of Ormesby and for local councillors Glyn and Irene Nightingale and Ann Wilson who have all worked extremely hard to ensure the plans weren’t approved.”

Ormesby Ward Cllr Glyn Nightingale and Cabinet Member for Corporate Resources said:

“Alongside our residents, we’ve worked hard to ensure the decision on this application was the right one. The housing plans were intrusive and the application should never have been considered.

“Irene, Ann and I are delighted with the decision.”

Deputy Leader of the council and prospective MP for the Redcar Constituency, Cllr Josh Mason said:

“I have been behind my colleagues and local residents 100%. Labour made some disastrous choices for housing developments in the borough and we’re now working as hard as we can to put this right.”

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Redcar MP Ian Swales praises delivery of major jobs boost

On the day that the Coalition Government's flagship Enterprise Zone programme hits the 15,500 jobs landmark, Redcar MP Ian Swales praises Lib Dem ministers for delivering a boost to the local economy.

Figures released today show that the Tees Valley Enterprise Zone has created roughly 1020 jobs so far, providing a real boost to the local economy in and knock-on benefits for the community, including improved infrastructure and new business opportunities.

Across the country, the Coalition Government's 24 Enterprise Zones have now created more than 15,500 jobs, attracted over 480 businesses and over £2.1 billion in private investment.
The growth has also provided a real boost to the UK's construction sector and supply chain.

Redcar MP Ian Swales said:

"Thanks to joint efforts by Business Secretary Vince Cable and Lib Dem local government minister Stephen Williams, we have seen a real boost to the local economy in terms of more jobs, more innovation and more power to the local community to do what's best for the area.

“This comes off the back of a whole series of announcements by the Lib Dem Deputy PM Nick Clegg of more money being taken out of Whitehall and put direct into the hands of local business and communities, especially through the Regional Growth Fund."

Lib Dem local government minister Stephen Williams MP said:

“Enterprise Zones like Tees Valley have gone a long way in re-balancing the economy, taking the power out of Whitehall's hands and putting it back into the hands of local communities."

“Just a fortnight ago, Lib Dem Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg also announced an extra £13.9m for the Tees Valley Local Enterprise Partnership via his flagship Growth Deals which Government estimates could deliver up to 9,000 new jobs, 5,000 new homes and generate £300m of public and private investment.”

Monday, 9 February 2015

Redcar Pier Association folds but the fight for a pier at Redcar goes on

It is sad the Pier for Redcar campaign group has folded but:
The fight goes on it is not over.
However, we need to aim for what is achievable and without private investors rushing in to build one a simple pier should be the first step.
A pier like the one at Saltburn that you can walk along and fish off will only cost around £6m. If the Council made a commitment and really wanted to it could facilitate that and the funding can be made available.
There is little chance at the present time to build one with a grandiose leisure facility at the end. But if you aim for one like Saltburn pier it is achievable.
What is preventing progress is the Council is not willing to take it on, produce a plan and facilitate it. If the Council was fully on board and actively trying to make it happen a pier for Redcar is a real possibility.
Cllr Josh Mason, Deputy Leader of Redcar & Cleveland Liberal Democrats and prospective MP for Redcar, added:
“I’ve been a member of the pier association for several years and I’m disappointed to hear the news of its demise.
“We have long argued of the benefits a pier would bring to our town, restoring our seafront to its former glory.”

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

“Redcar Labour Party in Turmoil” - Redcar MP Ian Swales

After months of infighting, Redcar Labour party’s feud over the vastly unpopular selection of a parliamentary candidate from Kent, Anna Turley, finally came to a head today.

After mass de-selection of some of their most senior cabinet members, 10 Labour Party councillors publicly resigned from the Labour party today outside the office of Kent PPC Anna Turley.

The de-selected councillors include council leader George Dunning, deputy leader Sheelagh Clarke and cabinet members Steve Goldswain, Mark Hannon and Norman Pickthall. Chairman of the Fire Authority Brian Briggs and former Mayor Vic Jeffries were also de-selected. Cabinet member Olwyn Peters, former Mayor Wendy Wall and current Redcar and Cleveland Mayor Carole Simms joined the de-selected members in their mass-resignation this afternoon.

The Labour party members staged a protest outside Anna Turley’s office today where they were pictured tearing up mock membership cards and speaking out against the so-called “Labour bullies”.

MP Ian Swales commented:

 “The Labour party in Redcar is clearly falling apart. All we’ve seen since the selection of their unpopular Kent candidate is a very obvious split in their group and some very public in-fighting.

“After all this petty fighting and back stabbing, how can the people of Redcar and Cleveland trust them to continue to run our council? It’s about time the discredited Labour administration was replaced with councillors who care more about their residents and our area than they do about petty politics.”

 Redcar’s Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate and local councillor Josh Mason commented:

“Not surprisingly, Ms Turley was not around today to face the music.

“My party and I are now acting to try and fix this mess before the council spirals further into chaos. A vote of no confidence has been put forward and will play out in the meeting of the full council next Thursday.

“The Liberal Democrats in Redcar are prepared to pick up the pieces of Labour’s mess and we will do everything we can to ensure that the best outcome is reached for local residents.”

Monday, 15 December 2014

Have your say on the proposals for a Combined Authority

Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council have provided the following information about the public consultation on the proposal for a Combined Authority:

Five local councils (Darlington, Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Redcar & Cleveland and Stockton-on-Tees) are asking for your views on proposals to form a Combined Authority for the area covered by the above Councils. There is a package of information available on the Councils website which is available by clicking on here.

This includes:

·           A consultation document
·           Some frequently asked questions
·           A draft governance review
·           A copy of the 9th December 2014 Cabinet report
·           Press releases
·           Video

This sets out what the Combined Authority would do and what the local councils would continue to do. In summary, the Combined Authority would focus on economic growth and our ambition to create 25,000 new jobs for the area and would NOT recreate the former Cleveland County Council. We would like to hear your views on our proposal. So, please complete online questionnaire by no later than 31st January 2015. There is space for your own wording too. Alternatively, you can complete the survey online:

Once the consultation period has closed we will report the conclusions of the consultation to all five councils no later than March 2015. If feedback is supportive, we intend to formally ask each Borough Council to approve our ‘scheme’ in March, which is when we have to submit our proposal to the Secretary of State.

The Secretary of State will then carry out further consultation before placing an ‘Order’ before both Houses of Parliament. Because of the General Election in May 2015, this is likely to mean that the earliest chance to have the Order approved before both Houses of Parliament would be Autumn 2015.

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Ian Swales MP secures flooding meeting for Residents

Following the devastating flooding around the Borough of Redcar and Cleveland in September 2013, Redcar MP Ian Swales has been pushing hard for residents to get answers from the responsible authorities.

Since the flooding, the council has been promising the take action to reduce the risk of future flooding. Northumbrian Water, SSI, the Environment Agency and local social housing providers also have a part to play.

A meeting has been arranged for Thursday 11 December from 6.30pm at Sacred Heart School, Redcar. All authorities will be represented and will be telling residents about the work they’ve been doing and their plans for the future.

All residents are welcome.

Commenting, Ian Swales said:

“It has been 10 months since I last arranged a public meeting and since then I have been pushing the authorities to take action and come up with a long term plan.

“The council has been promising the results of a hydrology study since March and it’s now time that they report the findings back to residents. I’ve been saying since day one that this will require drastic action and I now want to see it happen.”

Liberal Democrat Deputy Council Group Leader and Parliamentary Candidate for Redcar Constituency, Councillor Josh Mason said:

“Despite pressure from myself and Ian the council seem to have made little progress and seem to be hoping people will forget about the flooding last year.

“I have seen first-hand the devastating effects of the flooding on local residents and now want to see the relevant authorities come forward with a long-term plan that will reduce the risk of us ever having to experience anything like that again.”

Pictured: Ian Swales (left) and Josh Mason (right) in Marske visiting residents affected by flooding.