Last night’s Executive Meeting

I attended all of the above, along with a few colleagues.  Here again is the agenda.

Items 4 to 7a were presented by Officers, which is disgraceful in my view.  A couple of times afterwards the Lead Member would come and in say “I commend the report” etc.  This lack of responsibility on the part of these new Lead Members is part of the reason why I moved the following motion last week:

“Proposed by: Councillor Mark Bowen

Seconded by: Councillor Paul Jabbal

In view of the recent decision of the Labour Administration to decrease the amount of Borough Council Meetings, and with that the amount of opportunities for non-executive members to hold Executive Members to account, as well as the unannounced removal of named Lead Members from reports, this Council agrees that the Special Responsibility Allowances (SRA) for the entire Executive should reflect this major decrease in the level of political accountability by decreasing SRAs for Lead Members by 50% as follows:

                                          Previous             Current
Leader                                   34,000               17,000
 
Deputy Leader                        20,000               10,000
 
Other Executive Members         16,000               8,000

Council also agrees that if the level of political accountability and frequency of Borough Council Meetings are restored that the recommendations contained in the report relating to SRAs for the above positions should be implemented immediately.”

No single explanation has been given for this change and it could easily have been done as an announced at Borough Council.

As for my view on some of the reports:

The Future Provision of the Lampton Park Conference Centre (CSLL 165)
How on earth can they claim that this is financially beneficial when the report makes it clear that money will not be made in the short term?  It will lose money!
Why are they proceeding with the first recommendation without a new business case first?  Lets not let financial facts get in the way of an argument, hey?  Were they to talk in terms of break even point and when the net income will start to come in they would clearly have a stronger case – so why have they not done it?

Parking and Traffic Enforcement using CCTV cameras (ENV090)
I welcome this report on the whole.  I see it as an acknowledgement that the implementation of the cameras in Bedfont and Hanworth was not good enough.  It also exposes a Democratic Deficit that really frustrated me – the report does not address this but a comment from one Lead Member did allude to it.

There were some unproven remarks made by Councillors Mayne and Gupta.  The first made references to this being carried out by the ICG/Conservatives but we did not get any dates of decisions made (he is welcome to post the dates of such decisions and meetings here).  Councillor Gupta made remarks about it all being about Revenue Raising yet was happy to agree to the report which raised no beef with the principle of cameras being deployed.

Pavement Parking (ENV084)
I welcome this report.  What was not acknowledged was that the thorough work in the West Area was only done because I requested it and the then Executive, especially Paul Fisher, agreed to defer a previous report to get it done right and not quick.

In Year Savings 2010/11
Some Lead Members were keen to make political points and play to the audience.  The only thing that some of them may not have realised is that it was a part II item and that the audience was in fact a few Conservative Councillors – Doh!

On a more serious note, the item is a major one and deserves scrutiny.  For any reference they may make in the future about scrutiny, I can point out a Borough Council Meeting that has been reduced in the schedule.

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3 Responses to “Last night’s Executive Meeting”

  1. Gaham de wey peters Says:

    Looks like the lunatic’s have taken over the Asylum again !!

  2. Mark Savage Says:

    On the issue of Pavement Parking and Parking Enforcement, the blog above does not entirely make clear your own views on the matter, Mark. I don’t want there to be any confusion.
    As you will know, for instance, at present pavement parking is permitted in Carlton Avenue and the Sparrow Farm Estate area. However, I was rather concerned to see a chap, clearly working on behalf of the council- although I suppose it’s just conceivable it was for a utility company- measuring very precisely the distance between driveways on Carlton Avenue, i.e. that part which currently traditional pavement. To me, this suggests two things: (a) that the council intend to replace the paving stones with asphalt, as has been done on some other parts of this estate, or (b) whether as a result of that or not, that there are likely to be proposals to ban pavement parking in this street.

    Could you find out more, and put my mind to rest on this perhaps? I really do want to know what this man with a small wheel was doing.

    Secondly, regarding parking cameras, I note you refer to the CCTV cameras originally installed for crime prevention monitoring etc (rather than pavement parking) in Bedfont and Hanworth. As you know, however, cameras in Feltham are also affected, including presumably the one aimed at keeping cars out of the bus lane at Feltham Station’s eastbound side. It is to be hoped a proper “kiss and drop” stop will be introduced here soon, as it surely needs it.

    I’m rather more concerned, however, at what looks suspicously like a CCTV camera mounted at the junction of Central Parade and Sparrow Farm Drive, near the junction with Finch Drive. I don’t recall seeing this before. It is also close to Sparrow Farm Resident’s Association.

    Could you tell me therefore:
    (1) If it is a camera, when was it introduced, is it already switched on, or when will it be?
    (2) if it is a camera, why are there no statutory notices nearby advising that the area is monitored by CCTV, and advising who the operator is, as required by the Office of the Information Commissioner, I believe.
    (3) Am I being cynical in thinking that TfL may have plans to get this camera used to stop parking alongside the shops on Central Parade, which is of course the route terminus of the H26.

    I think we should be told…

  3. Mark Bowen Says:

    “On the issue of Pavement Parking and Parking Enforcement, the blog above does not entirely make clear your own views on the matter, Mark. I don’t want there to be any confusion.”

    I have been one of the biggest advocates for carrying out a piece of work to determine where it would be sensible to formalise pavement parking. I welcomed the report. The appendix in that report referred to every street in the West Area that could be involved.

    “Secondly, regarding parking cameras, I note you refer to the CCTV cameras originally installed for crime prevention monitoring etc (rather than pavement parking) in Bedfont and Hanworth. As you know, however, cameras in Feltham are also affected, including presumably the one aimed at keeping cars out of the bus lane at Feltham Station’s eastbound side. It is to be hoped a proper “kiss and drop” stop will be introduced here soon, as it surely needs it.”

    I agree and I will see whether things are with that. I made such a suggestion a number of months ago.

    This is the first I have heard of the camera at Sparrow Farm so will make some enquiries.

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