Sunday, 10 June 2007
North Yorks MPs Stage Anti-Unitary Protest
Last week, North Yorkshire MPs, including our own Robert Goodwill staged a protest outside the Houses of Parliament to show their opposition to a North Yorkshire Unitary Council. In an interview on Yorkshire Coast Radio, Mr Goodwill said that under a unitary council the Yorkshire Coast would not be classed a priority for tourism, and that as a result jobs would be lost. How he arrived at that conclusion is a mystery to me, and is simply scare-mongering. He simply does not want to upset his councillors down in Scarborough, the majority of whom want to keep Scarborough Borough Council as the status quo. He also said that having fewer councillors would mean a less democratic structure and accountability - which is nonsense. Currently, each county division in Whitby has a single county councillor, so people should get to know them quite easily and who is accountable. Under a unitary council these would increase to two councillors for each division, with an average electorate of around 4,000 - how can this be less democratic? Robert Goodwill represents our constituency of over 100,000 people; would he be prepared to share it with another MP to make it more democratic for us? I do not think so. As for Jim Dillon, chief executive of SBC, all he's bothered about is his own job and nobody else's. People whose jobs are to clean our streets and collect our rubbish are not at risk - but senior officers are, and that is why they are against a unitary council.