Live coverage of the September full council meeting

Follow the discussions and debate at the September full council meeting from the comfort of your home of office.

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OnTheWight will be reporting live from the council chamber for the September 2015 Full council meeting from 6pm.

The live updates that appear below from inside the chamber at County Hall will automatically refresh in the page. However, to see latest comments added to the article, you’ll need to refresh the page. Items in double brackets (()) indicate comment from the author.

Image: davelawler under CC BY 2.0

Wednesday, 2nd September, 2015 4:50pm

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Filed under: Island-wide, Isle of Wight Council, Isle of Wight News, Live coverage, Top story

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12 Comments

  1. They came in as Independents and are going to leave us as a Dependency.

  2. retired Hack


    2.Sep.2015 8:54pm

    Cllr Ward says the MP says he supports Island Line being in the franchise.
    Oh he does, does he?
    Cllr Ward also says he has the greatest respect for Cllr Bloomfield.
    Oh he does, does he?

  3. Perhaps Cowes Town Council who are sitting on a surplus of £200,000 should help prop up some much needed services across the island.

  4. Lord Bermondsey


    2.Sep.2015 10:29pm

    Anyone know if baby Hillards tears were due to hunger or a bit of trapped wind?

  5. The Budget Crisis on the Isle of Wight and the Political Demands on the Government:

    The view of the Trades Council regarding the budget crisis for the Isle of Wight and the political demands on the Government regarding funding and the call to treat the island as a special case.

    In the first place the main onus should be placed upon the Government and not the council. Preparing a legal balanced budget is now outside the possibility of the Council and management of the crisis, caused by Government funding, is not the priority it has been. Raising Council Tax is not the solution as it ameliorates some of the effect of the cuts in grants by taxing the people who are squeezed enough already and does not provide a solution. The negotiations with the government should be firm and not apologetic or offer “concessions”.

    Engaging with Government (The Trades Council view)

    · The business rates system as pointed cannot assist the island as it proposes to do elsewhere because of the low economic and business rate base here. It highlights a specific factor that makes the Island unique in the resource impact it has.

    · The island has a low wage economy.

    · It has a large area of deprivation comparable with other districts mainly in the north of the UK.

    · It has connectivity problems and other economic restraints caused by the fact that it is an island. It causes problems when travelling by expensive ferries to the mainland to work or visit families.

    · It receives poor responses in funding from the SLEP because of European and Government criteria that de-classifies it as an island with contiguity.

    · It has housing problems specific to being an island

    · The Isle of Wight has an above average older population and a wider impact on the health economy on the Island

    · It has NHS issues unique to being an island where people have to travel to the mainland for treatments that the island NHS cannot deliver.

    · It has notorious problems in education investment and teacher recruitment due to the fact it has island problems.

    · It has additional expenses due to PFI and maintaining the road system.

    · It has specific coastal erosion problems caused whenever there are natural disasters like flooding.

    · Introduction of some form of visitor tax to protect services which underpin the visitor economy is impractical and against the tourist industry.

    · Any negotiation should not include alteration to criteria to better reflect the Island’s separation from the mainland in the allocation of Government funds for business growth and support by Local Enterprise Partnerships. The funding path has proved to be ineffective in terms of Assisted Area Status and other funding streams. The Government cannot provide any guarantees or substantiate any promises that it would alleviate the general grant cuts crisis and should not be part of talks with the government over the budget.

    · Nor should support of promises for business start-ups be part of the discussions on the budget.

    · National concessionary fares being limited to island residents and not visitors or an additional specific grant to cover visitors, penalises visitors who may be tourists or relatives or visiting cultural delegations. We do not think that this limitation is the right way to go.

    · Business rate retention scheme should compensate by top up grant based on a higher threshold that reflects a south-east increase in business rate growth.

    · Providing assistance in bringing derelict tourist sites back into use is a specific issue relating to budget investment and should be raised as a specific problem unique to tourist resorts.

    · Creating greater competition in the Island’s adult social care market is not a solution to the care problem. The Trades Council believes that it is not the way forward to privatise adult and social care. Adult and children’s services overspend, as it is there is no prevention policy. In the context of the general service cuts, if income is taken away because people can’t work and other social fabric problems, there is an increasing need for adult and social care, which thus creates more people who are vulnerable. Adult Social care cost estimates at £2,100,000, with £1,800,000 care packages, require added government grant funding.

    · Children’s services and social care activity levels are very high on the Isle of Wight. The budget costs calculated at Children’s Services £360,000 (Residential/secure placements and fostering), points to high proportionate amounts in comparison to elsewhere and require additional Government funding. Child poverty on the Isle of Wight is massive and higher than most areas.

    · Introduction of a services delivery top up grant on the same basis as the rural services delivery top up grant that supports areas with similar characteristics.

    · Devolution is a concession to Government and not a solution. The Trades Council does not believe in a devolution deal with Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. It will not reduce Council taxes and will not be cheaper due to “efficiency” changes and removal of Island rights and democracy. It should not be offered as a bargaining chip to Government and should be left out of discussions over budget.

    • Vix Lowthion


      3.Sep.2015 12:12am

      ^^^ this is one of the greatest and most insightful and intelligent comments I have seen written on OTW.

      The island is being let down politically – by a council who see/have few options but to cut services to the bone and merge responsibilities with Hampshire where they can. And an MP who is sadly far more willing to serve his party than his constituency.

      Government formulas for funding cuts must be hurting every single local authority across the nation. And yet the island *is* a special case and faces all the issues to eloquently outlined above.

      It isn’t frustrating to know this. It is watching a crisis unfurl. What is the answer? Very strong leadership and community cohesion. And proper funding and investment in our critical front line services and also in preventing issues before they get to that stage. How do we get this? First steps are to convince our MP and our government that the crisis is happening…

  6. The Sciolist


    3.Sep.2015 7:02am

    You get what you vote for – and people voted for this council and the MP.

    If you really want change, you need to win the argument at the ballot box, not get arrowed in your favour OTW.

    • Steve Goodman


      3.Sep.2015 8:00am

      A reminder that only some people might get what they vote for under the first past the post system and elected politicians subsequent policy changes and failures to deliver promises and to listen to the concerns of the electorate.

      • Suruk the Slayer


        3.Sep.2015 8:49am

        A first past the post democracy is far from ideal, but most of the other ways are worse.

        At least with first past the post you end up with the representative that largest number of voters wanted. With most forms of proportional representation you end up with someone that nobody really wants, but few are overtly against.

        Agree about failures to deliver, though. If a candidate makes a substantive promise promise (“If elected, I will…..”) and cannot deliver if they ARE elected, they should be disbarred from standing in the next election. This would stop them making “vote grabbing” promises that they only ever have an outside chance of fulfilling.

  7. The Sciolist


    3.Sep.2015 10:13am

    Seeing the Lib Dems help run the country was enough to convince me that dsepite their low number of Mp’s, minor parties can easily be the tail that wags the dog.

    Our electoral system is far from perfect, but it does work and the electorate understands it. To remove the indie council, you need to vote for a party and the party’s need to offer you a candidate, something Labour never does here, except in very few wards.

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