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LABOUR’S EMILY BROTHERS DISMAYED BY FRACTURED COUNCIL GIVING ‘THE IMPRESSION OF BEING IN OFFICE BUT NOT IN POWER’

TUESDAY 21 APRIL 2015

 

Photo – Emily Asking Questions of Lib Dem Leader at Full Council 

Photo – Emily Asking Questions of Lib Dem Leader at Full Council

 

Photo – Emily with Anti Incinerator Protesters Outside Civic Offices Ahead of Full Council Meeting

Photo – Emily with Anti Incinerator Protesters Outside Civic Offices Ahead of Full Council Meeting


Following angry scenes at last night’s Full Council meeting, Labour’s Emily Brothers expressed dismay:
“The angry protests from members of the public and bad tempered exchanges between Councillors indicate that the Lib Dem administration is in free fall. The Tory opposition couldn’t take advantage of a Lib Dem suspension because their former leader attacked the party and then resigned the Whip. This is a fractured council which is failing Sutton residents.
“I’m very concerned by the lack of transparency from Lib Dems with rumours abound on ‘TrinityGate’ – Lib Dem connections to Viridor, Trinity Church and HealthWatch. It is hard to know what if fact and fiction, that’s why the public deserve the truth. They aren’t getting that from this fractured Lib Dem Council.
“In response to new leaks about a super hospital, resulting in the potential closures of Epsom and St Helier Hospital, I have proposed a local Referendum for 2018 to determine long term developments. It was very telling that Lib Dem Leader, Ruth Dombey, admitted Sutton Council were powerless and unable to influence decisions on the long term future of St Helier Hospital.
“I take a very different view. As the freehold owner of the St Helier site and having public health responsibility, Sutton Council is well placed to conduct a Referendum. I back the Trust’s Five Year Strategy, but remain circumspect about their long term development plans. Sutton Clinical Commissioning Group our siting on their hands and there is a history of failed proposal after another. That can’t continue, as local people need modern fit for purpose hospitals at Epsom and ST Helier beyond 2023. That’s why we need community leadership and a Referendum lock to shape long term solutions. We need Sutton CCG to sit up and listen to local people and a Referendum can deliver our collective view.
“I’m conducting a pilot ballot on a question that reflects the current position. The Infamous Lib Dem petition hasn’t worked, simply used for party data capturing. Local people must have a say at just £1.78 per electorate. I’m opened minded at this stage about the question because it will depend on the proposals that emerge.
“I attended Labour’s Merton Council last week which debated the future of St Helier Hospital. The Sutton Lib Dem response to ‘traingate’ and in action on part of the CCG is to stand by. I will continue to work constructively for a cross party consensus, with a Referendum lock central to finding a solution. That’s why I will seek to meet with party leaders post-election.
“I’m perplexed by the dismissive response to my question about Tory and Lib Dem plans for building a secondary school on greenbelt land at Rosehill Park. Again, the Lib Dem Council ‘gives the impression of being in office but not in power’. It isn’t any good for Lib Dems to shake their heads and pass the buck to the Education Funding Agency. There needs to be a sense of strategy, not simply responding to events. That’s why the Lib Dems are failing.
“Why would you by land from the old Sutton Hospital site for the express purpose of a new secondary school by 2017 without giving energy to that prospect? A new school, development of affordable housing and life science cluster have received my support. They are good things to do for our borough and would end the speculation about a super hospital, protecting both Epsom and St Helier sites.
“I learnt nothing about the feasibility studies the council have been conducting and hope that the findings will be put in the public domain very soon. I also want the council to look at alternative sites for a secondary school which will be needed from 2020. Rosehill Park has the potential to be enhanced for sport and outdoor recreation – it mustn’t be yet another Lib Dem missed opportunity.”

Questions from Emily Brothers to Councillor Ruth Dombey included:
• I believe that residents should be given the opportunity to express their view on the future of our local hospital that goes beyond signing a petition. To that end, will the Leader of the Council agree that: as the freehold owner of the St Helier site which is leased to the Hospital Trust and due to holding an interest in local health matters, the London Borough of Sutton holds a Referendum?
• Now that land has been bought from the former Sutton Hospital site for the purpose of a new secondary school, will the council agree to abandon plans to build on Rosehill Park and undertake to find an alternative site should another school be needed?
Emily Brothers has launched a pilot Ballot on the future of St Helier Hospital. The question she is posing reads:
• ‘The current St Helier Hospital site should continue to be the place for the delivery and development of Accident and Emergency, Maternity, Paediatric and other acute hospital provision within the London Borough of Sutton?’
As Emily Brothers goes around the constituency she’ll be asking local people to cast their vote. It is also possible to vote online by visiting:
http://www.poll-maker.com/poll295287xd5894EBD-11
 

 

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