This has come to a head over the past week, when there have been two instances (Hipperholme crossroads and the imposition of parking charges) where the Labour Cabinet have made clear their intention to push ahead with their own agenda. They are ignoring the views of the public of Calderdale and the wishes of the Council that were clearly set out at its budget-setting meeting in February.
All the current opposition groups on the Council believe that the attitude and actions of the Labour Cabinet are totally unacceptable, and that the public of Calderdale deserve better. We therefore had no option but to call for a vote of no confidence in the current administration.
The Liberal Democrat group will not be entering into a Coalition with the Conservatives. We are our own party with our own agenda. We will support a Conservative and Independent coalition on a supply and demand basis. In return for our support of their administration as a group we have won a guarantee of the following.
· The new administration implements the budget decisions from this year’s Annual Council Budget. Including the scrapping of evening parking charges in Halifax, and at car parks such as King Cross, Greetland & Stainland, Mytholmroyd and Todmorden.
· There is a review of Neighbourhoods to include the possibility of setting up community hubs across Calderdale.
· A Commitment that the Council will keep the Pellon Network Centre open and running.
· Ensuring that the Council uses its powers under s215 of the Town and Country Planning Act to get owners/developers to tidy up derelict sites (eg the Hope St/Halifax Rd site in Todmorden).
We have also ensured the new administration will consider
· Setting up a process where a petition of 1,000 local people can trigger a debate in Council (similar to that introduced by the Coalition Government at a national level).
· Reviewing the Cabinet system to examiner whether the Committee system of governance would be a more effective way of representing residents views and running Calderdale Council.
To achieve these aims, the only option open to the Council was to remove the Leader of the Council and replace him with someone who will honour these commitments in stark contrast to the way Labour deliberately have not.