At last night’s Corporate Scrutiny Meeting the Chairman of the committee, Cllr Richard Hollis (Con), told members he was looking forward to “clearing up the myths and untruths” about the Cowes Floating Bridge.
It had been explained that the legal action has been deferred for at least three weeks “due to Covid and other health conditions impacting on several representatives from one of the parties”, with a new mediation hearing date expected for later in February.
Clearing up “a lot of the myth and untruths”
Cllr Hollis said it was his intention at the March Corporate Scrutiny Committee meeting (Tuesday 9th March) to “spend a considerable amount of time clearing up a lot of the myth and untruths that are bandied around about the floating bridge”.
“I find it particularly galling, as other people do, the rubbish that is talked in some of the social media.”
Stewart: Profit and loss isn’t always counted in money
Cllr Julie Jones-Evans (Ind) said she was looking forward to having a “deep dive” into the detail and asked whether they could expect to see the profit and loss sheets, liabilities etc.
Cllr Stewart replied
“Profit and loss isn’t always counted in money. There’s a lot of disappointment here from people that they haven’t had a good and reliable service in the way they wanted, and keeping the community safe is a profit level in terms of making sure East and West Cowes can be joined up.
“There are many arguments and points to be made, the history of the floating bridge, how it came to be built in the way that it was, and how that was monitored etc.”
Cllr Debbie Andre (Island Indie) asked whether the council was still pursuing the implementation for the side thrusters, but was told by the council leader, Cllr Dave Stewart (Con), that he could not comment, as,
“It certainly is part of the legal action.”
Stewart: “So long as it is the right bridge”
Cllr Jones-Evans pointed out that Floating Bridge 5 had been a revenue generator (as reported here many times) as well as providing an important social function.
Cllr Stewart replied,
“I totally agree with you Cllr Jones-Evans and I hope you remember what you’ve just said because when I come to give my position on things we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that this bridge does have the potential to generate income, as well as provide an excellent service, so long as it is the right bridge.”
Hollis: “Bring this out into the open 100 per cent”
Cllr Hollis said he had done an enormous amount of work delving into this and has a list of questions and really looking forward, “when we can”, to bring this out into the open 100 per cent.