*UPDATE: The Greens have promised written replies to these questions*
Labour Councillors were shocked at the undemocratic decision taken by the Green administration to limit the number of opposition questions to three per group (negotiated up from two) at the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee this evening, leaving numerous questions on behalf of residents unanswered.
By limiting the number of questions opposition councillors could ask on behalf of residents, the Green administration has effectively ducked crucial scrutiny on a major policy committee.
In a move that won’t go down well with fans of democracy and accountability, the Greens have seemingly forgotten they are operating in a No Overall Council, without a majority, let alone the fact they weren’t even elected as the largest party in 2019.
This is the latest in a worrying trend of autocratic actions taken by the Green Group. Labour says the 2023 local elections can’t come soon enough.
Here are some of the questions Labour tabled on behalf of residents that the administration didn’t see fit to provide any answers to, let alone hear at committee:
- Given the risk to women and other users of Queens Park in the evening, will the Chair agree to install additional lighting to the central path with timers to provide illumination between 4.30-10.30pm?
- Can the Council please install an additional street light at the southern end of Tower Rd given the area is currently poorly lit leading to hazards for residents and residents feeling unsafe walking in this area at night?
- Given the parlous state of Steine St and the dire need to regenerate this historic street, will the Chair agree to include this road in the VG regeneration project?
- Given the dangerous levels of pollution across our city which exceeds WHO levels will the Committee agree to consider the introduction of a Ultra Low Emission Zone similar to that in London and a phased ban on solid fuel stoves in densely populated areas?
- Please can we have several additional dog mess bins in the dog walking area of Queens Park and some additional signs designating the boundaries of the area?
- Please can a number of physical signs be emplaced along Marine Parade prohibiting cycling on the pavement as well as other physical deterrent to prevent pavement cycling on this stretch of pavement?
- Given the particular unjust situation of expiration dates on visitor permits will the administration agree to review current policy with a view to extending usage duration for visitor permits to 6 years?
- Would the Chair please confirm which works and services are being undertaken to improve toilet facilities on the Hove seafront?
- The Playground Refurbishment Programme Officer report was deferred from the March 2022 ETS committee. Will the co-chairs of the committee confirm when it will be coming before this committee?
- The Council recently indicated that it had received funding to develop a cycle path on Madeira Drive, Brighton. What form of consultation will the Council undertake with residents prior to the commencement of any scheme?
- Please can I have an update on the impact statement for the removal of free 1 hr parking across the city?
- What measures are the Council taking to tackle the growth of weeds across the city over the coming months and how will this differ from the previous summer?
- Following press reports of so called ‘tyre extinguisher’ activists letting down tyres across the city, will the co-chairs of the ETS committee join me in condemning these dangerous acts of vandalism and explore ways for the council to highlight the dangers of such actions?