Sunday 23rd June 2024,
North Yorks Enquirer

Whitby Town Meeting/Assembly – 4th Sept. ’23

September 3, 2023 Whitby Town

Whitby Town Meeting/Assembly – 4th Sept. ’23

On Monday 4th September, the people of Whitby will meet at the Coliseum Centre to discuss a Question for Poll:

Should the present members of Whitby Town Council resign en masse to facilitate the democratic election, by ballot, of a fully mandated representative Town Council for Whitby?

The Assembly has been called by Councillors Rob BARNETT and Alf ABBOTT to allow the people of Whitby to ‘have their say’ on the effectiveness and ‘value for money’ provided by the Town Council as we move into the new Local Government Reorganisation era that has abolished Scarborough Borough Council and North Yorkshire County Council in favour of a new unitary authority – North Yorkshire Council, based in Northallerton.

From 1st April 2023, for the first time in 49 years, Whitby has been granted the opportunity to have a Town Council that speaks directly to the higher authority in Northallerton.

Now, into the sixth month of this golden opportunity, all right-thinking Town Councillors are asking whether or not Whitby Town Council in its present form is doing enough – or even is capable of doing enough – to serve the town’s best interest.

Does the Town Council provide ‘value for money’?

The 2023/24 Precept has been set at £283,560.00 (a rise of 21.1%). That works out at £57.31 per Band D household (see Council Tax Invoice, below).

Has your business increased its revenue by 21.1% this year?

Meanwhile, Staffing Costs have risen to £246,000, (a rise of 13.9%) thereby accounting for 86.5% (almost seven-eighths) of the Precept.

Has the content of your pay-packet increased by 13.9% this year?

No wonder some Councillors are asking if the Council has become nothing more than a gravy-train for the Town Clerk and his crew.

And the Town Council’s annual running costs amount to a further £100,000+ per year.

The Council is on the road to ruin.

Against these extortionate rises, it is demonstrable that the Town Council has accomplished virtually nothing during this financial year and, to add insult to injury, some Councillors are now demanding to be provided with i-Pads at a cost of around £30,000 – a sum which was not included in the Annual Budget and is therefore not permitted expenditure.

Are you satisfied with this abysmal pretence of local democracy?

I am not – which is why I shall attend the Town Meeting/Assembly and ‘have my say’.

I am not against the Town Council. I am a localist. But I am against the useless self-entitled fuddie-duddies who are dragging it down.

So my ‘say’ is this:

I want a Town Council populated by clever, experienced, dynamic leaders who will turn this around and give Whitby the service it deserves.

How about you?

 

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