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Paul Kennedy

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Everything posted by Paul Kennedy

  1. My understanding has always been that Councillors are nominated to represent each Council that makes up the Fire Authority, and given that they are paid appointments, Councillors are keen to be appointed, with such appointments being in the gift of a political leader. In my time on WBC I never had any paid outside appointments. In Warrington I think most places are taken by the largest group, Labour, with one place for a Liberal Democrat. I think separately the Fire Authority appoints a couple of independent members. The Chairman of the Cheshire is paid about £17,000 pa plus expenses, and there is now a vacancy. There was talk about merging the Fire Authority with the Police & Crime Commissioner Role http://www.cheshirefire.gov.uk/Assets/1/Annex%20A%20-%20APPROVED%20-%20Members%20Allowance%202016%20-%202017%20Scheme%20-%2010%2002%202016.pdf PS Thanks for that comment Observer, much appreciated. Not sure how often I will post, but doubt it will be as frequent as it was prior to 2010 when I stopped.
  2. A valid comment Gary, however there is a thought if people had some spine, they could fight party shackles from within. Speaking personally, I never felt that shackled and when I was the Leader of the Conservative Group, I had no whipping system and encouraged free thinking, and what I used to do was indicate my position and encourage others to discuss their position....and often we could have some Members voting for, some against and some abstaining....and then in some instances we all voted as a block, because that is what we felt was right. The Conservative Party HQ, its local MP and Associations never tried to influence our voting.....and had they have tried to, I would have politely given them short shrift. All I say to people is when you vote, be prepared to justify that vote. With regards to Penketh, maybe, but not sure there will be a by election as I sense the PCC will treat that job as his full time day job and slot his Councillor duties....which won't be that time demanding, in on an "as and when" basis, which is interestingly what others with a full time job do. Time will tell I guess, and I sense there might even be a by election elsewhere before Penketh
  3. Thanks Gary, good to be back....although I have never really gone away....WWW was and is always my first...and best read, of the morning, albeit I'm not sure how often I will post...or whether it will be as Paul Kennedy or......Mr Grumpy of Appleton....or both so that I can argue with myself. I had eight very happy years on the Council, and I always had in the back of my mind the following famous, but often misquoted, political quote: "All political lives, unless they are cut off in midstream at some happy juncture, end in failure, because that is the nature of politics and of human affairs". So for me, although I was very disappointed by the outcome of the Boundary Review, I took the pragmatic view that it would be my "happy juncture" and to call it a day. The sad thing is that I rather sense some other (former....and maybe even current) Councillors should have also given that quote some thought......it must be difficult for them, and I genuinely feel for them.
  4. Interestingly David Keane kept telling me that people would be surprised by the result....and that he would win. He was of course helped by the fact that in the traditional Conservative Cheshire heartlands there were no other elections and therefore no real enthusiasm to specifically turnout to vote for a PCC.
  5. Perish the thought PJ, perish the thought
  6. That is of course a very good and valid question and is part of the dilemma. There is a thought that sometimes when changes occur, that that is the time to take stock of the situation, discuss with family, consider a four year commitment, look at other opportunities etc etc etc.
  7. Predominantly in the Pewterspear Green area, and the former Ship Inn land. The others tend to be single plots. The WBC proposal did put Lower Walton north of the canal in to H,S & W Ward, along with some homes in the London Road and Pewterspear Green Road of Appleton. But my argument is that the Ward as it is now meets the criteria and will continue to do so in 2020. Anyway the LGBCE have received and acknowledge my submission, guess others will send in their submissions and the LGBCE will make their final decision, which should be published in early December. So for me it is just a matter of waiting and getting on with life....and que sera, sera as Doris Day sang.
  8. The photo was taken a few years ago......I've got worse since
  9. Good point Gary, and a bit of a puzzle, my picture is there in the My Profile, but it doesn't appear when I post......help. Mind you when they see my photo...they might not support the campaign
  10. Just to clarify what is a confusing matter. All Parish Councils will remain as will their current boundaries as the Boundary Commission are only looking at Borough Wards. What will happen if the Draft Recommendations go through is that in the case of Hatton, Stretton & Walton Parish Councils and their residents, rather than being in their own distinct Borough Ward, as they are at the moment, Hatton, Stretton and a section of Walton Parish Councils and their residents will be in the Appleton Borough Ward......along with Appleton Parish Council, and a section of Walton Parish and its residents will be in the Stockton Heath Borough Ward....along with Stockton Heath Parish Council. Another example would be Lymm, there the Draft Recommendation is to split the existing Lymm Borough Ward and have two new Borough Wards - Lymm South and Lymm North & Thelwall, so Lymm Parish Council would be in two Borough Council Wards rather than the Lymm Borough Ward it is in at the moment. You are correct Dizzy, if the Hatton, Stretton & Walton Ward ceases to be, then yes, as at May 2016, so will my position as a Borough Councillor..... Thank you for your kind words. PS the following is my submission that I sent to the Commission: For the attention of Mr Richard Buck, Review Manager, LGBCE. 29 August 2015 Dear Mr Buck Re. Warrington Boundary Review – Draft Recommendations I refer to the Draft Recommendations published on 25 August 2015, and would like to comment on the recommendation to erase the Hatton, Stretton & Walton Ward from the Borough. It is accepted that Hatton, Stretton & Walton, whilst geographically large, does have a small electorate. Nevertheless, as the following figures will show, the Ward, does currently, and is projected in 2020 to come within the 10% variance to average that the LGBCE sets as an important criteria when deciding on Ward patterns. As at the date of this letter, the electorate for the Ward is 2,539 (which is fractionally greater than the 2014 figure of 2526 submitted by Warrington Borough Council). The current figure is therefore 9.7% less than the average of 2,812 and within the 10% criteria. Projecting forward to 2020, the Warrington Borough Council July 2015 Strategic Housing Land Available Assessment (SHLAA) for the Ward, lists 149 sites that are deliverable. It would therefore be entirely reasonable to assume that those 149 sites would increase the electorate for the Ward by 200, resulting in a 2020 electorate of 2,739. That would result in a variance to the 2020 average of 2,912, of -5.9%, and well within the 10% criteria. On that basis, there is no reason for the existing Hatton, Stretton & Walton Ward to be subject to any change at all. With regards to equality of votes, might I respectfully suggest that what residents most want is quality of representation, accountability and recognition of the area in which they live. As a distinct Borough Ward, as it is now, that is exactly what the residents of Hatton, Stretton & Walton Ward receive. In my opinion, that will not be the case, when and if, the Ward is broken up and the names of the three Parish Communities are erased from the Borough Wards. In the LGBCE Guidance Literature, it is stated that; “A good pattern of Wards should: reflect community interests and identities and include evidence of community links”. There is also inference within the guidance, that having a greater number of Councillors in a Ward dilutes accountability, I agree with that. It therefore follows that a single Member Ward, such as Hatton, Stretton & Walton gives perfect accountability. Specifically looking at the proposal for Walton, it is to divide it between both Appleton and Stockton Heath. That will be confusing for both its residents and Parish Council, leading, I would suggest, to ineffective representation and accountability at a Borough level. With regards to the use of the description of Lower Walton by the LGBCE, locally the area is known by residents as Walton, with Lower Walton being north of the Manchester Ship Canal and part of the Latchford West Ward. In light of the above, I would ask that the Draft Recommendation is revised, and that the Hatton, Stretton and Walton Ward is reinstated exactly to how it is now. From my analysis of the numbers, I do not believe that its reinstatement will change the variance to average figure to one that exceeds the 10% criteria, for the Wards of Appleton and Stockton Heath. Thank you for taking the time to consider my representation. I would be happy to drive you around the Ward and to discuss my representation with you, should you wish. Yours sincerely Paul Kennedy Warrington Borough Councillor for the Hatton, Stretton & Walton Ward
  11. Ah, but because of a system called democracy, those officers would then become elected politicians....and so the circle would continue. With regards to "give them the nod".......didn't happen with the Collegiate loan........ And to your first point, I sense there are Borough Councillors who think that from time to time.
  12. Oh I don't know about that Gary Great article and much appreciated....and as always you have your finger right on the pulse of public opinion.
  13. Can't speak for others, but I issued an email warning to the Administration about this proposed loan on 7th July, which was prior to the Executive Board meeting, and with a track record of being a critical friend, it is a great disappointment that they didn't heed my warning. I'm really not interested in Labour infighting, only trying to protect taxpayers' money and WBC's reputation. What will be interesting to see now is if the Collegiate withdraw their loan request. Kind Regards Paul
  14. £36 million secured by a first charge over properties with the assessed valuation being substantially more than the loan value. If a property is sold then the loan secured against it must be repaid or transferred to another property which does not already have a loan secured against it. In effect the WBC loans are no different, other than scale, to an individual taking out a mortgage with a bank. With regards to the right to buy policy, firstly it might only happen if there is a Conservative Government, and that we will know in less than three weeks, and secondly, housing associations are not part of government, they are private, not for profit organisations, many also being charities, therefore compelling such organisations to sell off their properties, if it is not something that they want to do, is a policy that will most likely be determined in the Courts. Regarding bankruptcy, that would be most likely due to their own failure of effective management and oversight by their non executive directors. It is often the case that where housing associations do get in to trouble they are taken over by larger associations in order to protect the reputation of the sector....something that used to happen with building societies, with the Cheshire and Derbyshire building societies coming to mind in recent times. PS I hope the above informs the discussion, and it is not my intention to make further contributions to it. Posters and readers are always welcome to email me via my WBC email address and I will do my best to answer any queries they might raise.It should be noted that it was largely at my behest that WBC set up a Treasury Management Board, of which I am a Member, to scrutinise these loans and to protect taxpayers' money, something that I personally take very seriously
  15. A one off post to say, I love it and thank you PJ...if only I still looked as young though. Kindest Regards & Best Wishes to you all, Paul
  16. The Liberal Democrats fought the most disgraceful, disgusting and dishonest campaign that I have ever seen. Their politicians and activists here in the Constituency should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves. It seems apparent to me that their current Leader here in Warrington has disowned the campaign, and rightly so.
  17. Better take my bed with me I guess. I have to say that as the Conservative Election Agent for Warrington South, both my candidate and the team have been superb, fighting an honest and professional campaign, I am very proud of them all.
  18. he has gone very quite on this issue now As an Election Agent, I am currently far too busy to spend too much time posting on this Forum. My normal excellent postings will resume in due course.....possibly
  19. Alas for you Dizzy, there are no local elections in Stockton Heath this year, only the General Election.
  20. The problem is that "the people" speak with many and mostly differing voices. We are talking about the man in the street, not politicians,Paul. No I was talking about the man in the street, or should I say on the doorstep, Peter. You would be amazed by the variety of comments and opinions expressed.
  21. Daily Telegraph: "David Cameron is prepared to rule out any coalition deal with the Liberal Democrats and will try to lead a minority government if the Tories narrowly fail to win an outright majority in the General Election on Thursday"
  22. I wouldn't have them anywhere near Warrington Town Hall either Baz.
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