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West Sussex County Council

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Community grants to be considered in Worthing

Six applications for Community Initiative Funding will be considered by the Worthing County Local Committee later this month.

The Committee meets at 7pm on Monday, July 23 at the Chatsworth Hotel, 17-23 The Steyne, Worthing Town Centre, BN11 3DU.
Applications have been received from the following:

•     Women’s Aid – £5,000 towards replacement windows for the refuge.

•     Phoenix Youth Group – £4,882 towards equipment, residential activity and coach hire.

•     Worthing Tennis and Squash Club – £700 towards purchasing croquet equipment.

•     Rhythmix – £2,320 towards a pilot project for children and young people at Oak Grove College.

•     Creative Sewing Group – £700 towards purchasing six sewing machines.

•     Sussex Junior Chess – £185 towards funding a junior chess tournament at Broadwater School.
Bob Smytherman, Chairman of Worthing County Local Committee, said:

“Funds are available to be allocated for suitable good causes in the town.

“If any local organisation has a special event or project which needs help, we are always prepared to listen.

“Applications need to be submitted to your local County Councillor, who will submit the application on your behalf.”

Elsewhere on the agenda there will be a debate about proposed gap closures along The Boulevard and the ‘Talk With Us’ public forum.
For further information on Community Initiative Funding, or to see the agenda for the meeting, visit the County Local Committee web pages at www.westsussex.gov.uk

Triple success for Buy With Confidence

If goods or services go wrong, West Sussex Trading Standards may be called in to help. So why not start with a Trading Standards-approved trader in the first place? The scheme is called Buy With Confidence – watch three local firms who found it easy to join, and a big boost for business.

West Sussex Tories waste £1m on PR including now You-Tube films of themselves while residents suffer savage cuts

West Sussex County Tory administration have been slammed today by the Liberal Democrats for their extravagant communications budget, and making their own You-Tube film clips.

Dr James Walsh, deputy group leader of the County Council Liberal Democrats said:   “At a time of savage cuts to personal care services for vulnerable elderly and young people, it is astonishing that the County Council can find £1million to fund its PR department, Glossy ‘lifestyle’ Connections newspaper, and now even a new You-tube film unit!     The You- tube film unit cost £40,000 to set up, and will then cost £26,000 per year to run. So far its clips, all promoting or extolling county services and personal interviews with Tory Cabinet Members as well as promotiing the “Big Society” have been seen by a maximum of 200 viewers, out of a population of 750,000. That doesn’t seem like good value to me!
It is also a kick in the teeth for all those elderly and younger adults who have had their care packages reduced or stopped, in the name of saving cash for the county.   Can the Tory leadership really believe that a You-tube film unit is a higher priority than providing care packages for the frail elderly or residents with a learning disability?   “We have questioned the whole PR budget, including a “communications director”, and the cost of the county newspaper for years, but this new luxury enterprise seems yet another step too far, and demonstrating how far the Tory County Council is divorced from reality.”

ALL THE JOBS  AND MORE PAY FOR THE TORY BOYS AND GIRLS AT COUNTY HALL

West Sussex Liberal Democrat Councillors yesterday (Friday) decided to boycott the Scrutiny (Select) Committee vice-chairmanships at County Hall after the ruling Conservatives grabbed all the Committee chairmanships and allowances for themselves.

Dr James Walsh, deputy group leader said

“The Tories want to be judge and jury for all their policies in West Sussex ignoring advice from The independent Centre for Public Scrutiny (CfPS) who recommend scrutiny (select committee) chairs should be shared with opposition Councillors, and Parliament itself shares the chairs of its Select Committees according to party seats in the Commons. On that basis alone the Lib Dems, with a quarter of the seats at County Hall should have at least one chairmanship.The whole basis of scrutiny of Cabinet decisions is that it should not be party political, but unbiased and open-minded, and generally that has worked well in West Sussex over the last 10 years when ‘Cabinet style’ governace was introduced.

The Tory takeover means that all policy decisions taken by the Tory cabinet members will be scrutinised by 4 scrutiny (select) committees all with a paid Conservative chairman and a majority of Tory members. That is simply undemocratic and unfair.”

Morwen Millson, group leader said

“We have tried patiently to get common sense to prevail, but the Conservative group would not budge on this. Our decision to boycott the Select committee vice-chairs has been taken more in sorrow than in anger.  It is good practice by the vast majority of councils to share scrutiny chairmanships according to party strengths. It will not be understood by voters if the Conservative group wants effectively to introduce a one-party state at County Hall. We have not taken this decision lightly, but feel that it is the only way that we can try and get reason, openness, transparency and accountability to prevail.

“West Sussex County Council has always operated well as an inclusive elected member organisation, harnessing all member talents regardles of political allegiance, but this is a retrograde step by the Tories which will inevitably introduce more divisiveness and rancour into our procedures.”

Dr James Walsh added

“This really does show who is raking in the cash for themselves at County Hall. The Tories have got more snouts in the taxpayers’ trough, and now they are just that bit deeper too!”

West Sussex County Council paid £373,812 in extra “Special Responsibility Allowances” to some 33 members last year, including the Chairman, Leader, Cabinet Members, their deputies, and to Select Committee chairmen. Of these 29 are Conservatives, who received a total of £335,175, 3 were Liberal Democrats a total of £31,596, and one Labour at £7,039. The Tories voted to reduce the Liberal Democrat share to £22,837, whilst keeping £326,416 for themselves. The make up of the County Council is 49 Conservative, 18 Liberal Democrat, 2 Labour and 2 independents.

For information on the Community Initiative Fund contact your County Councillor or visit the County Local Committee pages at www.westsussex.gov.uk.

Trail Blazing 20 mph Limits Motion for Worthing

A 20’s Plenty for Us Press Release – May 2011

West Sussex County Councillors are to discuss spearheading 20 mph limits in Worthing.

On 13th May, West Sussex County Councillors will consider a motion from Bob Smytherman noting the extra £2.6 million available in this year’s council budget for road repairs in West Sussex and also proposing the spearheading of 20mph limits in the county:-

“.. given the potential safety, health, congestion relief, noise reduction and quality of life benefits, the Deputy Leader and portfolio for Highways and Transport be requested to reserve money to introduce 20mph speed restrictions in non-major routes in residential areas throughout Worthing..”

Local politicians from both Worthing and Chichester Borough Councils have voted for 20 mph as their default residential speed limit, without humps.  Through routes can be excluded, with each road considered on its own merits.  Funding from West Sussex CC would turn this democratically agreed policy into reality, with Worthing trail blazing its introduction in the County.  5.4 million people across Britain live in places like Portsmouth, Oxford, Bristol and Islington who have already implemented, or are committed to, Total 20 limits.

The Public Consultation Key Issues Report for WSCC Local Transport Plan (Dec 2010) highlights public support of 20 mph limits without humps.

“A large number of comments called for the introduction of 20 mph speed limits in urban areas.”

20 mph reduces risk to walkers and cyclists by 95% and makes streets feel safer. Department for Transport guidance says these are priority modes, with safety as a top concern.  20 mph limits do not have humps, and are not anti-motorist as drivers benefit from better safety.  The public health argument is conclusively cost effective.  20 mph limits provide outstanding value for money with first year rates of return at 800% quoted in Warrington due to reductions in injuries. Subsequent years are free of cost. Some light touch enforcement only is required. Portsmouth had 22% fewer casualties after 2 years of turning 94% of roads 20 mph.

20’s Plenty for Us campaigners in Worthing and Chichester invite residents to sign their on line petitions at www.20splentyforworthing.org.uk and www.20splentyforchichester.org.uk.

Support the cause by writing to councillors, in particular lionel.barnard@westsussex.gov.uk to fund 20 mph limits which cost £333 per street in Portsmouth.

Also attached as a pdf. Photos are available on our site www.20splentyforus.org.uk

Local 20’s Plenty for Worthing Contact is Duncan Kay, 20splentyforworthing@googlemail.com, www.20splentyforworthing.org.uk

Anna Semlyen

20’s Plenty for Us Campaign Manager
T: 07572 120439  e: Anna.s@20splentyforus.org.uk

www.20splentyforus.org.uk, www.20splentyforus.blogspot.com

Join our campaigner Yahoo group groupregister@20splentyforus.org.uk

Join our facebook group http://tinyurl.com/20splentyonfacebook