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District Council Question Time - What Would YOU Like Us to Ask? Updated

Sunday 25 March 2012, 13:17
By Mandy Cochrane

South Somerset District Council logoUPDATE 04/04/12

John Baxter has unfortunately hurt his back and will be unable to attend the meeting at SSDC tomorrow. We'll postpone all your questions for the next meeting and report back to you afterwards.

Wincanton Window recently received an invitation to attend an informal press briefing at South Somerset District Council offices in Yeovil on Thursday 5th April 2012. In attendance will be Cllr Tim Carroll (Deputy Leader), Cllr Henry Hobhouse (Portfolio Holder for Property & Climate Change), and Mark Williams (Chief Executive).

The meeting "aims to bring everyone up to speed with what is happening within the council, how they are reacting to Central Government changes and what all this means to the people of South Somerset."

They are equally open to suggestions of key matters to put on the agenda for future meetings, so this is your chance to let us know what matters to you and we'll pass it along.

We're told there will be time for questions, so we thought it would be a useful opportunity for us to go prepared with some questions from Wincanton people (and of course our local villages), as we know how easy it is for really local issues to be swallowed up in the wider management of the district.

So, what questions would you like us to ask for you? Leave comments below this article, email or use our Twitter, Facebook or Google+ pages to ask your questions. John Baxter will be representing Wincanton Window at the meeting and he'll do his best to get as many answers as he can and report back.



Posts: 1
SSDC Press Briefing
Reply #1 on : Thu March 29, 2012, 10:54:00
Planning, waste collection and what else? Do we know what the District Council does in Wincanton? Is it true as some claim that our rates go to subsidise what happens in Yeovil or do we get what we pay for and more? How can we find out? Is the SSDC website helpful? Please give me some questions.

Posts: 1
The Good, Bad & Ugly
Reply #2 on : Thu March 29, 2012, 17:50:39
Disappointing not to have seen more comments, this article really was/is a great opportunity to have your say.

The Good - Wincanton has to be one of the most pro-active Towns for keeping a Town Centre clear of rubbish. I often see the small white lorry with 'Wincanton Town Council', printed on. I'm sure they are out 7 days a week. The team do a great job & deserve a special 'Mentioned in dispatches'. I'd like to know how this service is funded.

The Bad - on more than one occasion I have tried to report street lighting in & around the Town which has been on 24-7 but still they burn away. Why is it so difficult to put this right? who's footing the bill?

The Ugly - Illegal parking in the High Street. Everywhere you go there is either a speed camera or mobile speeding unit. I'd like to think this was for the benefit of our safety but suspect that the revenue generated is massive & the main reason for such a large assignment of resources. When was the last time you saw a local 'Bobby', walking down the High Street? Why can't more be done to patrol the High Street? Prehaps the revenue generated would put an end to the car parking charges without us all paying more at sometime in the future.
arthur pickup
Posts: 1
Questions for SSDC
Reply #3 on : Sun April 01, 2012, 18:00:27
I would like to see SSDC asked the following questions:-
1. When is the council going to do something about the Green Dragon? Empty shops are one thing, but this shop degrades the whole town centre. The council should be subsidising the refurbishment of this shop, thus allowing it to make money and pay the full rates as a result.
2. When is recycling going to be taken seriously? All items should be taken away free of charge. This should include unwanted fridges, washing machines, TVs, Carpets, hardcore, garden waste etc. I was disgusted to see that our local recycling facility at Dimmer has started to charge for the depositing of hardcore. This is a sure way to increase fly-tipping.
3. When are we going to have a local recycling facility? Dimmer which is 8 miles away fro Wincanton is somewhat economic.
4. When are we going to have a footpath from the main entrance of King Arthurs to Dancing Lane? A new entrance has now been built opposite the school. This means that children coming from the new estate will have cross over onto the grass verge or alternatively on wet days walk down the road. This area is very busy at school start and finish times. Apart from pedestrians this area is used as a car pick-up point for the children
5. When are we going to have a footpath from the junction of Dancing lane with West hill to King Arthurs rear entrance? Again this is a busy pedestrian area.
6. How did the council allow the Health Centre to move out of town without planning for the vacuum that it left behind? When Safeway moved away the then councillors ensured that a small supermarket moved in and the new supermarket could not open a dispensary. This saved our centre whereas the new development not only leaves a big hole but is in danger of destroying both our Chemists.
7. When are we going to clear up this mess above created by our Council planners? May I suggest they subsidise its regeneration By knocking it down and creating a new community square or even another free car park. Or is their idea of regeneration to allow another Minnie Tesco to pollute our town centre?
8. When is the Council going to stop wasting time and money on parking meters and other money grabbing schemes and start investing something back into the towns of Somerset? Instead of bringing us into line with other towns around the area, which soak the motorist, why not bring them into line with us and provide free parking.
9. Is it true that the SSDC employs 2000 staff on an average salary of £25,000. That’s one heck of a lot of money. What percentage of the total yearly budget does this constitute?
10. Is it true that 30% of the yearly budget is spent on IT and PR?
11. Is it true that 25% of the yearly budget is spent on council employee pensions ?
12. What cuts are going to be made next year to IT and PR and council employees? Or is this meeting just another IT and PR exercise to justify an increase in next years budget.

Posts: 1
Questions for SSDC
Reply #4 on : Wed April 04, 2012, 12:11:17
Unfortunately, John has hurt his back and won't be able to attend the meeting with SSDC tomorrow. We'll postpone all your questions until the next meeting and report back to you afterwards.
Last Edit: April 04, 2012, 12:15:16 by mandycochrane  

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