Unlike some of his Labour colleagues, John Mann MP isn’t subtle enough to engage in party political spin.
His tactics are much more basic than that, especially when it comes to attacking Nottinghamshire County Council. He simply misrepresents the council’s policies through his official column in the Worksop Guardian.
Mr Mann clearly thinks the people of Bassetlaw are gullible fools and much of his agenda is so obvious that I’m not going to indulge it. I will, however, correct a few of his most blatant untruths.
Conservative-controlled Nottinghamshire County Council has not ‘overlooked’ building a new Worksop bus station, unlike the former Labour leadership who had 28 years to do something about it and achieved nothing. Worksop bus station has been included in our capital programme planning and the only sticking point is how long it takes Labour-controlled Bassetlaw District Council to identify a site and produce their share of the funding.
The same applies to our attempts to expand Broadband coverage in Bassetlaw. The County Council has already identified its share of the funding to deliver this improvement, but Bassetlaw District Council has so far refused to put up their share, even though this area would get the greatest benefit.
Finally, regarding street lights, Nottinghamshire County Council has listened carefully to residents in identifying where to reduce lighting in the small hours of the morning. It has been shown in other areas of the country that this policy does not increase crime. In some cases crime actually reduces, but such facts do not suit Mr Mann’s scaremongering agenda so he chooses to ignore them. He also completely says the opposite of what is happening as, in conjunction with the Police; decisions have not been made to turn lights off in high crime areas.
Nottinghamshire County Council is not alone in having to make big savings because of the failed economic policies of Mr Mann’s Labour Government over 13 years. The difference is that under the Conservatives, the Council is working more efficiently and trying new ideas to save this money, rather than increasing council tax. Last week we voted to freeze council tax for a third consecutive year, helping hard-pressed taxpayers across Bassetlaw.
The alternative is to return to a Labour-controlled council which doubled council tax between 1997 and 2009 and left Nottinghamshire as the highest taxing shire council in the country. This year, Labour proposed to put up county council tax by 3 per cent each year for the next four years. All Bassetlaw Labour county councillors voted in favour of this. If Mr Mann wants to complain about ‘extraordinary decisions made by those in power’ he should speak to his Labour colleagues or look in the mirror.
Coun Wendy Quigley