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  • Writer's pictureDavid Taylor

Monthly Update: Pay Rises and Parking Chaos

Over the last month, Havering Councillors have been dealing with the fallout out the latest budget. The council has agreed to borrow up to £53m from government, with a potential £60m of interest. We later had confusion around whether the Chief Exec would receive a pay-rise, taking his salary close to £200k a year. And, this week, I've been battling parking chaos with over-zealous enforcement issuing what I consider to be unreasonable fines. 


Havering Council have also launched their public consultation on the Masterplan. 


More details on the above, and my work as your councillor, are below. 


 

We want a grant, not a loan!


At Full Council, on March 27th, Conservatives tabled a motion that called on the council to request government funding as a grant and not a loan.


The loan, that Labour and the HRA have signed us up to, could bring as much as £60m interest (or £2m a year) on a loan of £53m. This will further hurt our financial situation and is kicking the can down the road.


We're repeatedly told that the government know and acknowledge that Havering is not in this financial mess due to our own actions, unlike other councils.


If that is the case, then I think that should be acknowledged and Havering should not be penalised.


All Councillors backed the motion, except for the Labour Deputy Mayor who voted against it.


We now wait to see what steps the Leader and the council will take to make this request.


Whoever is in national government, I will put Romford before party and I have no shame in lobbying my Conservatives colleagues to get a better deal for our town.


 

Knife Crime Summit

Havering held a knife crime summit, at Romford Baptist Church, that I was pleased to be able to support and help to arrange. 


Over 100 residents packed the hall to visit exhibitions from local charities and organisations who are tackling knife-crime and anti-social behaviour in Havering. We heard from Superintendent, council staff, and bereaved parents. 


The summit was just the start and my hope is that it prompts further actions. A good number of Councillors were present, including the Leader of the Council, so we now wait to hear how they will respond to what they heard. 


I am having a number of conversations about how we go forward from here and will keep you informed.


Read the Havering Daily's report on the event.



 

Parking Chaos

It is my view that Havering Council are becoming too heavy handed with parking fines.


A neighbour recently received a PCN because the tyre of their car was ever so slightly over the white line, outside their house, and they had a resident parking permit. Similar stories fill my inboxes and are all over social media.


At full council, I asked the Cabinet Member to instruct the council take a more considered approach. The reply was that there should be no grey-areas. Given that the appeals process can take 50 days, I don't think it OK we send people down that route.


Then, last Sunday, Havering issued PCNS to dozens of vehicles which were parked on the market square on Sunday. The Sunday market has now been discontinued and legal notices, posted by the council on lampposts and on their website, state the market has free parking on a Sunday. However, the signs in the market were not updated in time.


I appealed this and have received written confirmation that the council will cancel these fines. However, they do not admit that a mistake was made.


Overly strict parking enforcement and high prices will strangle Romford, with drivers forced out of the town to places like Lakeside. I will continue to fight for the survival of our town, which is being put at risk with the loss of car-parks and increased parking charges.


Watch my question and the Cabinet Member's reply


 

Did Councillors vote for the Chief Exec to get a pay rise?


The short answer, I've no idea! The long-answer, Councillors were asked to approve a report that indicated new pay-scales for senior council staff. The Chief Exec's pay, vs. what is currently on the council website, has a large increase.



Local media reports seem to confirm a pay-rise of up to £12k.



 

The Romford Masterplan


The long-awaited masterplan is out for public consultation and I want you to reply. 


Do you think the Brewery car-park should become riverside homes? Do we need a second entrance to the station? Isn't it about time we clean up the Rom? 


Answer these questions by responding to the consultation


 

Romford FC qualified for the FA Vase final, after a nail-biting 9-10 victory at Lincoln.


The game was the second of a two-leg tie between the clubs, with a 2-2 draw at Romford the week before. Romford had bravely battled back from behind with just 10 men in that game.


At Lincoln the game finished a 0-0 draw, with Romford having a goal disallowed and despite the club being the stronger side throughout. The game went to penalties and Romford held their nerves to outscore Lincoln.


This is a massive win for the club who are currently playing at a temporary home outside of Romford.


Give the club a follow on their social media, and look out for news about tickets to Wembley.


It's time to get the whole town behind the club!




 

Remember, if you have any questions or concerns you can get in touch with me by emailing councillordavid.taylor@havering.gov.uk.


Kind regards


Councillor David Taylor | Conservatives


St Edward's Ward, Romford


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