Leader of Council Paul Diviani replies to Councillor Claire Wright – you need development to keep car parking charges from rising!

11 Mar

Councillor Wright reported the comments of an Ottery councillor HERE that seems to suggest that Mr Diviani said that areas with Independent councillors would be treated differently to those which had a Conservative majority.

Here is his reply:

Well hello Claire

This was one of many conversations I have around the district which are frequently without an agenda or minutes taken. The topic as I recall was a perceived lack of funding for OSM as opposed to other towns, which you will know to be a misconception (there is a perceived lack of funding in other East Devon towns as well where no one says they receive more than they need).

I don’t recall any particular comment on involvement of independent councillors but it could well have arisen in general conversation if at the time independent councillors such as you and Roger Giles had been involved in speaking against development in OSM and West Hill. Development as you know is the major source of funding for socially desirable projects via S106 or a unilateral undertaking.

How else do you suggest these projects are funded other than by increasing council tax, car park charges etc?

Kind regards

Paul

Is “Well, Hello Claire” any way to start a formal correspondence with a councillor?

He confirms that he has many meetings without minutes or agendas and that the conversation “might” have happened.  Might it be a good idea to keep minutes of such meetings so that he can be sure what happened?  Is his memory so poor – if so, should he really be leading a district councild?

It would appear that “speaking against developments in OSM and West Hill” is quite different to speaking against developments in any other area – otherwise why highlight it.  Many Conservative councillors speak against developments in their areas: why are Independent councillors any different?

And here we have it:  development gives the council more money to spend on the things it considers important:  such as selling the family silver and moving their offices nearer to Exeter to an industrial park with poor communications.

How do we suggest that things such as car parking charges are not increased?  Shelving the move to Skypark would be one way.

It seems there is a veiled threat here:  vote Conservative or we will treat you differently.

Of course, if you DON’T vote Conservative next time and they end up in the minority then this sort of thing will end.

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