Liberal Democrats are set to demand the officers of Torbay Council call time on the contract with TOR2, who manage a significant number of Council functions such as cleaning Torbay’s streets and toilets, recycling and parks maintenance.
The Ellacombe Liberal Democrat councillor Cindy Stocks, who is putting the motion, said: “It is time Torbay Council said enough is enough and seek to end the contract. The breaking point for me was this summer with the shambolic management of waste and recycling across Torbay resulting in our streets being left filthy with refuse for weeks on end. I am also aware that there is a lack of progress in improving our recycling rates that could cost the council hundreds of thousands of pounds in fines if we fail to get a handle on this matter.”
Paignton Liberal Democrat councillor Chris Carter, who is seconding the motion, said: “I despair in the way this contract has been managed. Our Conservative council has had a light touch management approach since its inception. This has resulted in the poor performance of this contract that our communities in Torbay now suffer from. “
Liberal Democrats on Torbay Council are set to put a motion at Torbay’s Full Council meeting on 19 October, demanding that taxi drivers have adequate training to ensure that assistance dogs can use this service.
A Torquay Liberal Democrat councillor, Mandy Darling, who is a guide dog user herself, said: “On a recent visit to Bournemouth I encountered discrimination when trying to use a taxi. As a regular user of taxis in Torbay I can say the vast majority provide an outstanding service but I want to ensure that we adopt best practice in order that visitors and locals who use assistance dogs do not suffer the discrimination I experienced in Bournemouth.”
A Paignton Liberal Democrat councillor, Ian Doggett, who is seconding the motion said,:“I am aware that Torbay Council is currently reviewing its policies around licencing of taxis. It is, therefore, very timely that we can put this motion forward. We want to send a positive message that Torbay is an open and tolerant community. I hope as part of this review we can not only improve the lot of assistance dog users but also take account of other disabilities such as those who may suffer from dementia.”
Torbay Liberal Democrats are set to propose a motion of no confidence in Devon and Cornwall’s Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez at the next meeting of Torbay Council on October 19th.
The motion requests that Torbay Council’s Chief Executive, Steve Parrock, should contact the Home Secretary requesting she use whatever powers may be available to remove Mrs Hernandez from office and for members of Torbay Council to show their lack of support for the Police and Crime Commissioner by voting “no confidence” in her office.
Since her election to the post of Police and Crime Commissioner in 2016, Mrs Hernandez has found herself subject to severe criticism on several occasions, such as when she posed for a ‘selfie’ at the scene of a hotel fire in Exeter and after she suggested that gun-owning members of the public might defend rural areas against terror attacks.
The Liberal Democrat councillor for Tormohun, Nick Pentney, who is proposing the motion, said: “Our Police and Crime Commissioner’s behaviour has raised more than one eyebrow since her election in 2016. But the main issue for me is the way that – under her watch – police and PCSO number’s in Torquay continue to be reduced whilst accounts of crime and anti-social behaviour in our town centre is rocketing. That cannot be right and accountability must fall at the door of Mrs Hernandez.”
Fellow Torquay Liberal Democrat councillor, who is seconding the motion, Cindy Stocks added: “I’ve been told by those serving in the police that numbers of front line PCSOs have been reduced from over 30 to just 8 in the space of only a few years. Meanwhile, crime, anti-social behaviour, drug dealing and alcohol abuse is plaguing our streets and our hardworking but overstretched police simply cannot cope. We need our streets reclaimed and for that we need extra policing resource.”
Liberal Democrats on Torbay Council are set to call on the Council to protect the BMX track and the playing field off Easterfield Lane Watcombe Torquay, by registering them with the national memorial scheme Fields In Trust at the Torbay Full council to be held on 19 October 2017.
Steve Darling, Watcombe ward councillor and leader of the Liberal Democrat group on Torbay Council, said: “Earlier this year we got the Council to agree to transfer the original King George V playing fields to this organisation to protect them. Shortly after this decision I was led to believe that the transfer would include the Easterfield Lan playing field and so we decided to let sleeping dogs lie. Recently, however, we were advised that the Council had decided only to register the King George the V playing fields. We know the community see these recreational areas as being inextricably linked and so we are putting this proposal forward.”
Roger Stringer, fellow Liberal Democrat and Watcombe councillor, said: “This land is the green lung of St Marychurch and Watcombe and we need to ensure that it is protected for generations to come. People were delighted that the King George V playng fields were protected. We see this motion as finishing the job. “
Two Paignton Liberal Democrat Councillors are supporting the juniors of Paignton Rugby Club by raising their dispute over where they can play with the elected Mayor and Executive member with responsibility of sport.
Clifton with Maidenway Councillors Ian Doggett and Adrian Sanders have questions tabled for answer at the next Full Council meeting on the 19th October.
Torbay Council had agreed to allow eight and nine-year-olds from Paignton rugby club to play in Torbay Park on Sunday mornings. But then withdrew permission following a complaint from a local resident.
Cllr Ian Doggett said he was concerned that inconsistent decision making brings the council into disrepute. "It also contradicts the challenges the council faces encouraging healthy lifestyles and providing activities for young people."
Fellow Liberal Democrat Councillor Adrian Sanders added: "We should be doing far more to encourage organised sports for young people in the bay not putting barriers in their way. We should applaud and support the volunteers who help and encourage young people to participate in sport."
The survey seeks to find out, amongst other things, what types of crime people and businesses have experienced, any hotspots where crime or anti-social behaviour may be taking place, and what the priorities for local police should be.
Commenting on the survey, the leader of the Liberal Democrats in Torbay, Councillor Steve Darling, said: “There have been increasing reports of late of anti-social behaviour and crime in Torbay, which is why we are conducting the survey to try and get a better picture of what is happening. This is in order to help inform how the Council can respond and work with partner agencies. We have already been out in the centre of Torquay and on the doorsteps and will be going out to other areas over the next few weeks.”
The chairman of Torquay Liberal Democrats, David Ward, said: “The retailers and other business are pleased to have someone asking for their views. It is quite disturbing to hear some of their experiences. We have been around about half the town centre so far and plan to complete Torquay town centre in the next few days. As Liberal Democrats we feel it is important that we listen to our communities rather than imposing our views on them."
Please go to the top menu to and click on "Crime Survey" to complete the survey, and many thanks.
Residents in St Martin’s Court, Hele, Torquay, have contacted their local Liberal Democrat councillors as they are fed up with the large amount of rubbish that over months has collected behind the property. They highlight the fact that children play in this area and it is only a matter of time before a child is injured.
The Liberal Democrat councillor for the area, Mandy Darling, is set to ask a question at the next Full Council meeting on the 19th October 2017.
Cllr Mandy Darling said: “The community have been proactive in trying to get the fly-tipping removed. The problem seems to be that this area is a “no-mans-land” with no one claiming responsibility for ownership.” She went on to say: “Residents should not have to see this eyesore when they look out of their windows, they should not live in fear of being overrun with rats.”
Fellow councillor Nick Pentney added: “Residents are on tenterhooks, worried that a child is going to be hurt amongst the debris just outside their windows. It is time the Council stopped buck-passing and got the contractors to remove this fly-tipping eyesore.”
A Local resident, Mrs Price, said,:“We are all really concerned about the children's safety. It is only a matter of time before someone gets injured.” She went on to say: “I have seen rats in the rubbish and I fear they will come into our homes.”
The question Cllr Darling will be asking is:-
Fly-tipping has been collecting over the summer at the rear of St Martin’s Court accessed by Corfe Crescent, Hele, Torquay. This rubbish is a health hazard, encourages rats and is a danger to children playing in the area. It is also unsightly and encourages further fly tipping.
Over many months the local community have been trying to ascertain a way forward to getting this area cleared but with little effect. Westward Housing say that it is not their land, Sanctuary disclaims responsibility and the Council have confirmed that the land behind St Martin’s Court is not in their ownership and not their responsibility.
The local community in the area are extremely concerned and unhappy about this situation but the Council seems to be unwilling to establish a way forward. This situation canot go on. It is only a matter of time before a child is injured or we have rats entering properties.
Please can this Council provide a way forward in order to resolve this situation and clear this festering eyesore?
Torbay Liberal Democrats will be petitioning for a fair deal for public sector workers this Saturday morning in Torquay town Centre. They will be calling for the Chancellor of the Exchequer to scrap the public sector pay cap. They will be petitioning from 10.30 onwards, outside Primark.
At the Full Council this week Liberal Democrats on Torbay Council are set to put a motion to the council also demanding that the public sector pay cap be scrapped.
The Liberal Democrat group leader ,Steve Darling, said: “In a week when we have heard from both the police and NHS nurses about the negative impact on recruitment and retention of staff, the 1% pay cap is harming these essential services. It is time that the Conservative government acknowledged the true value of these public servants and lifted this pay cap.”
The Liberal Democrat deputy group leader, Chris Carter, said: “Austerity was only meant to last for a few years. The never ending pay cap is seriously impacting the standard of living of these essential workers.”
Liberal Democrats on Torbay Council have condemned Conservatives on the council for failing to give a clear deadline for the new provision of the Torbay School, following the plan to base the school at Parkfield being rejected in May of this year. At a Full Council meeting last night , Liberal Democrats demanded a clear time line for an options appraisal for this new provision as a "Poor OFSTED" for the school prescribed. The Tories at the council meeting voted to raid the funds for the provision of the special school for children with social emotional & mental health problems and use it for the purchase of land for a mainstream school on the outskirts of Paignton.
Liberal Democrats on Torbay Council are concerned that the Conservative elected Mayor, Gordon Oliver, desperate to curry favour with residents of Churston will destroy an already weakened local plan, by placing a covenant on Churston Golf course. The covenant would stop the development of a site that already has planning permission for dwellings and is within the local plan for development. The decision is set to take place at this evenings Full Council on the 8 August 2017.
Nick Pentney, a Liberal Democrat Councillor on the Torbay Planning Committee , explained: “The government demands a five year adequate supply of houses to be built from the local plan. The inspector in 2015 demanded that, if neighbourhood plans were not forthcoming allocating the five year supply of houses, then the council would need to make its own allocations in 2016. This did not occur and now the council has left us exposed for developers to make inappropriate development proposals anywhere in Torbay.”