Now about that cancelled Firework Display in Maghull

It looks like the comrades are doing a swift U-turn having found out that cancelling Maghull’s firework display will make them about as popular as snow at harvest time.

Everything is now pointing to the fact that they are going to provide a display having told the community that they can’t afford it and need to save the money via their own Labour gloom and doom press release that the Aintree and Maghull Champion used as its headline article only two editions ago. Indeed, a printed report is going to Maghull Town Council’s meeting on Wednesday that clearly recommends that the display is cancelled and that the the money saved be used as a budgetary saving. To quote directly from that report “… recommend that the Council does not fund a fireworks display in 2011 and takes the £4,500 as a budget saving”. Whilst the report is in the name of the Town Clerk he would not have issued it without the Labour Leadership of the Council agreeing it. And they had better not try blaming the Clerk for this carry on.

So up until the Town Council papers were issued late last week Labour were all for cancelling it but now, after some bad publicity in the press, they look to be doing  just the opposite!

I must admit that I am glad that they have sobered up as for the life of me I could not see what their objective was in trying to cancel it in the first place. It has been a hugely popular community event for many years but my suspicion is that Labour wanted to save the money to then spend it elsewhere and boy have they had their finger burnt in the process!

Labour to cut Maghull’s firework display

In the light of Maghull Town Council’s ruling Labour Group threatening the community with the withdrawal of the Town’s long-running fireworks display we Lib Dems have called on Labour to sort themselves out.

Parish and Town Councils are ‘can do’ not ‘can’t do’ organisations as they are beholden to no one but the community that elected them. They don’t get any Government funding so all this nonsense about Coalition Government cuts putting the firework display at risk is utter rubbish.

The fact is that the Town Council took over running the display from the Round Table in the 1990’s when the charity could no longer keep it going. We promised then to keep the event running and have done so year after year. In the past couple of years Sefton Council has given money to run it but we all knew that it was short term funding and that the Town Council would have to cover it once again. Had we Lib Dems been re-elected with a majority last May, on the Town Council, the firework display would not have been under threat, neither would we have closed the flagship Youth Coffee Bar, in Maghull Town Hall, for weeks on end as Labour have done.

I really do wonder if the Labour Group are dedicated Maghullians at all. To be on a Parish or Town Council you need to be passionate about the community and accept that you are elected to sort out challenges and problems – there is no one else to blame.

My fellow Lib Dem Maghull Town Councillor Andrew Blackburn, who with Cllr. Jane Day and I form the opposition to Labour’s 13 councillors agrees. This what Andrew thinks

“We have heard nothing but bad news from Labour since they took control of the Council in May. So far they have:-

  • refused to submit a detailed paper on why our Green Belt needs protecting – despite having written one
  • they have been all over the place on Academies – refusing to debate a motion they had put down for debate themselves
  • they have closed the Youth Coffee Bar because they could not find solutions to alleged health and safety problems
  • and now they want to bring the curtain down on years of a community firework display which is aimed at stopping injuries amongst local youngsters!

What will Labour seek not to address next? I am proud of Maghull and its community but Labour seem to be hell bent on stripping the heart out of the Town whilst trying to blame others.”

Green Belt – Conversation with a Lydiate resident

Resident – Were you at the appeal hearing about the canal marina that was proposed to be built on local Green Belt?

Me – Yes, I was on the first day but not the following half day.

Resident – Can you tell me which elected representatives were there other than yourself?

Me – Cllr. Robbie Fenton, Cllr. Andrew Blackburn & Cllr. Richard Hands

Resident – Are they all Lib Dems and were there no others attending from Labour or the Tories?

Me – That’s right, just the 4 of us Lib Dems

Resident – Did anyone vote for the original planning application that was refused that led to the appeal hearing?

Me – Yes, some Labour members of the Planning Committee voted for it.

Resident – Thank you for clarifying things.

Did Clegg hit the right notes?

Well it was tough, uncompromising and a sadly very realistic speach that he made yesterday.

Frankly, Clegg must be made of strong stuff! He is doing what many of us would simply be unable to do in appalling circumstances. Of course he was right to say that Labour should never be trusted with the economy again because we are all in a very deep financial hole due to Labour not regulating the bankers and keeping on spending and borrowing when it was just not sensible to do that.

I will give Nick 8 out of 10  for his speech and a medal for his guts day in day out!

Labour Club – Cage fighting with kids as young as 8!

I don’t know about anyone else but I was completely taken aback to see a BBC North West News report this yesterday about lads as young as 8  cage fighting in a Labour Club in Preston. I don’t think you could ever make up such a story.

What next, strippers in the Town Hall? It is bad enough that some people think that teaching young lads to cage fight is giving them a good start in life but for a Labour Club to allow this to go on in their premises beggars belief!

Cutting Taxes!

Lib Dems: Cut taxes for ordinary people, not the richest

The Lib Dems are opposing calls for an immediate cut in the 50% tax rate paid by higher rate taxpayers. Nick Clegg’s party instead wants to give more help to those on middle and low incomes who need it the most.

Lib Dem Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander said, “At a time when the whole country faces serious financial challenges, the priority needs to be people on low and middle incomes.”

A key part of the coalition agreement was the Lib Dem commitment to making taxes fairer. The Lib Dems are well on their way to delivering on their pledge that no one should pay tax on the first £10,000 they earn.

Nearly a million low paid workers are no longer paying income tax thanks to this. All basic rate tax payers are paying £200 less in income tax. Each year more and more people on low and middle incomes will gain more thanks to the Lib Dem fairer tax plan.

Danny Alexander said, “Fairer taxes is our goal. I don’t see why, in the next parliament, we shouldn’t be trying to get to a situation where people in a full-time job on the minimum wage are paying no income tax at all.” This would mean that no one would pay tax on the first £12,500 they earn.

Being an active trade unionist for over 30 years in a public sector union that has consistently fought for a fairer tax system I find some encouraging words here. The big issue though will be getting the national debt down so to facilitate significant action towards fairer taxes. One thing is for sure the Tories will never want fairer taxes for low and middle income folks and Labour, when they had the chance in the boom years, did not deliver as my trade union (PCS) said at the time.