JUST FIVE DAYS TO MAKE SURE NORTHAMPTON PEOPLE KEEP CONTROL OF OUR TOWN
There are just five days left to respond to Government plans to strip Northampton of its Borough Council and take away our control over our town’s affairs.
If you agree that Northampton decisions should be made by Northampton people, then tell the government using this link here.
Under the Government plans our town would be run by a council that includes the whole of Daventry and South Northamptonshire. So we would become part of a huge rural area and the needs of our urban community would get lost.
The Labour Party in Northampton has opposed these plans as have many hundreds of people across the town. We went to London to lobby our Tory MPs – that’s us in the picture above. However the Conservatives are pushing ahead with it and the Government consultation closes on January 25th.
So now is the time to make your voice heard. You can read the full consultation here.
THERESA MAY BREXIT DEAL COMES IN BOTTOM IN LOCAL SURVEY
Theresa May’s deal emerged as the loser in the survey of local opinion on the way forward for Brexit.
It got only 20% of the vote, compared with 42% for leaving with no deal and 28% for delaying or cancelling Brexit. Holding a second, people’s, vote was the preferred with forward for 25 per cent of the people who sent back survey forms delivered to parts of Boothville, Kingsthorpe and Spring Park.
Sally Keeble says: “This shows the disaster of Theresa May’s deal. She’s had two and a half years to build a consensus. But instead she’s produced a terrible deal that has left the country as divided as ever.”
You can read more on this here
First step in sorting out the money – now the Tories must improve our services
The Tory government has recognised the scale of Northamptonshire’s disaster and allowed the County Council to spend £60 million from the sale of Angel Square.
It’s something Labour leaders called for in our lobby of Parliament (pictured above) and in our recent letter. We also called for Tory central government to pay for the reorganisation of our local government – the abolition of the Council that has become such an embarrassment to them.
Most importantly, the Tories must reverse the catastrophic decline in our services, and rebuild the workforce and public confidence. The failure of children’s services is one of the most serious, but not the only of our services to be hit.
In the longer term, we need the fair funding for local services by a Labour government. You can read fuller coverage on this story here.
CALL TO ACTION FOR COUNTY’S DOMESTIC ABUSE REFUGES
Sally Keeble is backing a call by domestic abuse organisations for urgent action by the county’s MPs to save refuges for survivors of abuse.
The move comes after warnings that refuges will be cut after the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government turned down an application for funding for the groups. The application was submitted by seven local housing authorities in Northamptonshire, led by Northampton.
Sally Keeble said: “Northamptonshire has been a trailblazer in tackling domestic abuse. The Sunflower centre provided a model for services elsewhere in the country, and services have been developed here for men who are affected by domestic abuse
“Whatever the reasons for the MHCLG decision the MPs need to take action quickly to make sure the Northants refuges can survive.”
This latest threat to comes four years after Sally Keeble worked with the refuges to stop moves by the local authorities to end funding for the refuges. Local coverage of the crisis is here.
Sign the petition to get our roads gritted this winter
There’s real anger building up over the decision by Northants County Council to drop over 30 busy roads off the list for gritting this winter.
Some of the roads are bus routes, some serve schools, some are very steep and some are all three – and busy as well.
The full list of roads in Northampton North being dropped off the gritting list is:
Abington Ave, Acre Lane, Aintree Rd, Balmoral Rd, Birchfield Rd, Birchfield Rd East, Birds Hill Rd, Charnwood Ave, Churchill Ave, Collingwood Rd, Cranford Rd, Crestwood Rd, Goodwood Ave, Greenhills Rd, Hastings Rd, The Headlands, Holmecross Rd, Keswick Drive, Link Rd, Nursery Lane, Obelisk Rise, Oulton Rd, Queenswood Ave, Reynard Way, Spinney Hill Rd, St Davids Rd, Stimpson Ave, Whitehills Cres, Whitehills Way, Yardley Rd, Yelvertoft Rd.
It’s a matter of safety to have these roads gritted. So sign the petition to make clear to Northamptonshire County Council that this is a cut too far.
Labour leaders call for Government action to plug £133 million council budget hole
Labour leaders in Northamptonshire’s have put an action package to Communities Secretary James Brokenshire MP to deal with the budget crisis at County Hall.
“We believe that the inability of the Conservative administration to manage the finances or services poses acute risks to the most vulnerable people in Northamptonshire,” they warn in a joint letter to the Government.
They criticise the continuing disarray in the Council’s Conservative administration, and ask for the Government to:
- Pay the cost of reorganisation
- Allow flexibility in use of capital receipts to pay off the debts
- Put the remainder of the debt into a residuary body to manage over time
They say that some of the cuts proposed by Northamptonshire’s Tory administration are undeliverable And they say that senior figures in the administration should lead by example: chief executive services are one of the areas of overspend.
Launch of campaign on Universal Credit
This week Universal Credit rolls out in Northampton. It’s the Government’s flagship benefits programme that has caused soaring rent arrears and household debt during its trial phases.
So to help people in Northampton North avoid difficulties, Rt Hon John Healey MP, Labour’s Shadow Housing Secretary, came to launch Sally’s campaign. It includes special leaflets, street stalls, advice sessions and a page in this website with lots of information, advice and links to resource. There’s also a short information sheet to download and use at meetings.
At the launch people from advice organisations and community groups talked of their experiences of Universal Credit and agreed to monitor the impact. And John Healey said that this was a unique campaign to make sure people don’t lose out.
Below: Sally and John at the launch of the campaign at Café Emm in Weston Favell shopping centre.