Around 160 residents of Sandown crowded into The Bay Primary School on Friday night and voted almost unanimously for six of their councillors to resign.
Vote of no confidence
A number of motions were proposed, the first stating,
“No confidence in the Sandown Town Councillors, who prior to the May 2017 election supported the Broadway Centre rebuilding project which has resulted in the impostition of a 74% increase in the town precept on Sandown Town Council taxpayers and the reduction of other services.”
It went on to say,
“This town meeting calls on the members named to resign forthwith. The members concerned are Cllr Raj Patel; Cllr Gary Young; Cllr Ian Ward; Cllr Connie Cowley; Cllr Chris Dupre and Cllr Jacquie Mereweather.”
Call for Dupre to go
Other motions that received almost unanimous support included one calling for the resignation of Cllr Dupre (up to this point he had stated he would not resign).
Another called for the Town Council to take action to construct a Town Plan with consultation with residents to better manage the way forward for the Town.
VAT issue being investigated
During the meeting Cllr Debbie Andre (who was not on the town council at the time of Broadway Centre decision) explained that the previous clerk (who was also the ‘responsible financial officer’) had not informed the town council about the VAT issue that has cost the council £125,000.
She added that an expert has now been appointed to look at the issue and will present recommendations to the council once their report is completed.
Cllr Ian Ward explained that it might be possible to get the money back, but it would be at a cost of £500.
The next move is in the hands of the councillors.
Image: © Rob Jennings via the VB Flickr Pool