Friday 06th December 2019,
North Yorks Enquirer

“A Political Eunuch in SBC”

November 15, 2019 Letters

A Letter to the Editor from Councillor Michelle DONOHUE-MONCRIEFF [Ind.], who is not an admirer of autocracy.

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Sir,

As I arrived home from work late on Wednesday, I heard from other Councillors that Yorkshire Coast Radio had reported that Scarborough Borough Council had decided not to bid to be part of next year’s Tour de Yorkshire.

I have always had doubts about the Tour de Yorkshire and, despite the hype, I have found that there are mixed opinions about the event when I discuss it with residents. However, this so-called decision came as a major surprise to me as Councillors were not asked to express an opinion on the matter. Now as a member of the Independent Group which is, in theory, part of an “arrangement” with the Labour-led administration, residents would understandably assume – even expect – that I was consulted.

The answer to that one is a huge big fat No!

This is the umpteenth time that this has happened. We have the trademark press release quoting the Council Leader extolling the merits of his latest autocratic decision. Basically, openness and transparency amounts to checking the Yorkshire Coast Radio website to find out what the Council is doing. Wow, Steve, you really are delivering on your promise!

For a Leader who continually tells us that the Council has been for too long run by small cabals, Cllr. Siddons’ approach to Leadership has the hallmarks of egotistical dictatorship. Add to this repeated delays to the promised new committees,  I can’t help but think that Cllr. Siddons is only interested in one opinion – his own.

As for cabals – in the absence of the new committee system, we have a four person Cabinet, or should I say cabal? That means 42 of 46 councillors are completely excluded from major decisions. We don’t even get a vote at full Council.

At the last Council meeting, I and others challenged the Leader about the concerns raised with me by residents that the four person Cabinet is fundamentally undemocratic. All we had in response from Cllr. Siddons was “I” don’t want to change it. He seems to forget that Labour has only 13 votes our of 46 in total. Politically speaking he is a eunuch in the SBC brothel without the support of others.

I hate to break it to him but his opinion doesn’t count. The opinions of the Independent team keeping him in power do. If things don’t change quickly, in the coming weeks Cllr. Siddons may find that there’s no-one in the team.

My patience has run out with Cllr. Siddons who has over-promised and under-delivered in spectacular style.

Yours, etc

Michelle Donohue-Moncrieff

SBC Independent Councillor for Hunmanby Ward

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