At last night’s Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee, Labour Councillors Gary Wilkinson (Central Hove), Theresa Fowler (Hollingdean & Stanmer), Nancy Platts (East Brighton) and Les Hamilton (South Portslade) held the administration to account on the key issues of the day.
You can watch the meeting back in full here: https://aisapps.sonicfoundry.com/AuditelScheduler/CreateSchedules/Past/20
You can read our live Twitter thread here:
And that's it for another #ETS meeting.
Your @bhlabour councillors scrutinised the administration on:
— brightonhovelabourcllrs (@bhlabour) September 22, 2021
And you can read our summary below…
Labour back residents calling for traffic calming:
A range of petitions came forward from residents advocating for various traffic calming measures across the city. Councillor Nancy Platts said Labour welcomed any ideas to calm traffic and reduce road traffic accidents, calling for safer streets for all road users. Labour backed each petition in turn, and asked officers to produce a report on road danger reduction that could encompass all the fantastic ideas that were put forward by residents…
Labour call for more tree planting and better air quality:
Labour Councillors supported motions that called for more tree planting and better air quality across Brighton & Hove. Councillor Platts asked for a ‘one-stop shop’ that would give residents clarity about exactly where to go in order to get more trees planted in their communities. Councillor Wilkinson highlighted the thousands of asthma casualties every year, and now long Covid – conditions exacerbated by air pollution…
Labour want better bus services for residents:
At Budget Council, Labour brought forward an amendment that identified funds to explore a circular minibus service that would connect hilly areas to arterial routes into the city. We also undertook meetings with local bus companies to advocate for such a service that our residents urgently need. Unfortunately, we haven’t seen any action on this from the Council so Councillor Platts held the administration to account on this. We secured a commitment to revisit these plans and come back with more information.
Labour also called for a simplification of fares so all residents could easily access the cheapest journeys possible, and for a robust bus strategy that would encourage modal shift. We thanked bus drivers for risking personal safety to keep the city moving through the pandemic, and reiterated our commitment to free bus travel for U16s…
Labour push for better engagement with residents on parking and school streets:
Labour welcomed the progress on the council’s school streets programme that we initiated whilst in administration, but asked for certain assurances. Councillor Wilkinson asked for air quality monitoring outside schools. Whilst reiterating our support for school streets, we asked for public consultation before future road closures.
On parking, Councillors Fowler and Hamilton questioned the council’s ‘computer says no’ approach to residents permit choices in zones G and J, and successfully changed the recommendations of the report to retain people’s ability to choose and relieve parking pressures on the main Ditchling Road. Councillor Wilkinson also welcomed progress on the installation of electric vehicle charging points, a programme started under the Labour administration…
Labour push for a solution to missed bin collections:
Labour Councillors have been overwhelmed by emails from residents who still aren’t getting their bins collected. We asked why there appears to be no end in sight to the perennial failure to achieve regular rubbish and recycling collections across the city. Residents are suffering. Everywhere you go you see overflowing rubbish and recycling bins. The Council is breaking its promises to residents on bin collections and we are desperate to help the administration find a permanent solution.
In the light of the news of more industrial action at CityClean that will likely mean 14 days of rubbish piling up in the streets, Councillor Platts asked for progress on her earlier request of the council hiring a senior industrial relations officer to deal with these employment relations problems once and for all.
Councillor Fowler also asked about the lack of bins in parks. Her residents have been waiting over a year for new bins in Hollingdean Park…