I’m sharing the Northampton Borough Council Labour Press release explaining the position regarding the move towards implementing Parish Councils across Northampton.
Northampton Labour Group
++++++ PRESS RELEASE ++++++
(For Immediate Release)
Tories Misleading Public On Parish Councils
Cllr Terry Wire, local Labour Leader, claims the Tories are being deliberately biased and not telling residents of the disadvantages about setting up Parish Councils.
The Labour Group at the Guildhall believes that Parish Councils in Northampton would create an extra layer of bureaucracy also place an unnecessary financial burden on households especially during this second recession. Local Tories boasted about freezing council tax in the budget but at the same time by trying to introduce more Parish Councils through the so-called big society residents will pay more.
On your Council Tax bill you pay for services provided by the County Council the Borough Council and the Police Authority the tax can be capped giving no increase. This is not the case with a Parish Council they can charge residents what they like. Labour believes Parishes will be paying for core services, which are the responsibility of the Borough, County and Police Authority.
For example, the Tories recently spoke about the possibility of Duston Parish Council doubling the floor space of the local Community Centre. How will, that be paid for? Most probably it will come from the taxation on Duston residents. At present a Band D property in Duston pays £52.67 towards Duston Parish Council.
Northampton Labour feels the creation of yet more Parish Councils in the town is politically motivated at trying to ‘hollow’ out Northampton Borough Council to pave the way for a Unitary County Council. We want a Unitary Borough Council, which would mean just one tier of local government in Northampton whereby we look after our own affairs.
This November there will be elections for a Police Commissioner. Also, on the same day in some parts of the town, including St. James, residents will vote yes or no for a Parish Council. Cllr Terry Wire, who is the local councillor for St. James, will be campaigning along with his colleagues for a ‘NO’ vote in the area.
Cllr Terry Wire DL says:
“Parish Councils might work fine in rural South Northamptonshire but in Northampton I think they are just another layer of bureaucracy. The biggest problem though is that they will place an additional financial burden on working people. Here we are in a second recession created by a Tory led Government and they are arguing people should pay another tax!
The people I have spoken with in St James don’t want to pay anymore in council tax. The literature put out by the Tory Northampton Borough Council is in fact quite misleading and not giving residents the full picture on Parish Councils. Labour will be campaigning for a ‘no’ vote in St. James and across the town.
People on a Band D property in Duston pay £52.67 and most people in Northampton can ill afford this additional tax. Council tax on Northampton Borough Council and Northamptonshire County Council can be capped but Parish Council precepts cannot. If this is the big society then it’s very costly.