OPINION: “COUNCIL RESOLVES TO CONTINUE TO PLACE RESIDENTS AT THE HEART OF THE DECISION-MAKING PROCESS”. ER – NO YOU DON’T.

The Labour amendments to the Green party motion on estate ballots will appal all reasonable-minded people.

The additions and amendments begin with the utterly bonkers comment that:

Lambeth is committed to placing residents at the heart of the decision-making process, as part of our plans to build more and better homes to help tackle the housing crisis. That includes providing new homes for residents currently living in poor-quality homes on some of our estates that we cannot afford to refurbish and providing additional council homes for families on the waiting list.

Perhaps they should be saying: Lambeth is committed to placing residents at the heart of the decision-making process and then ignoring them.

And why do residents live in poor quality homes which they cannot afford to refurbish?

Because Lambeth Labour haven’t repaired them. And it’s not because they didn’t have the money. They have put tens of millions into banks and building societies over the last four to five years – and this was not money they owed the banks and building societies. The only monies Lambeth owe is to the Government’s bank the Public Works Loan Board.

Labour have then added the following to the Green party motion. This reads:

(v) That this council supports the policy set out by the leader of the Labour party which is why Lambeth’s estate regeneration schemes are being undertaken by a 100 per cent council-owned company not private developers and why we have guaranteed no net loss of social housing, full rights to remain for all council tenants and a fair deal for leaseholders and freeholders. Labour party policy on ballots applies to all future schemes under a Labour government, when councils would have the funding, flexibility and powers to build and refurbish social housing that is denied to them by this Conservative government.

IT NEGLECTS TO STATE THAT the only reason people living on five of the six estates Labour’s lemmings are hell-bent on demolishing cannot have a ballot is because of top-secret deals done between the Mayor of London and elements on Lambeth council. These deals were so secret that not even Labour GLA members appear to have known about them.

Ballots would apply to all future schemes?. Including Central Hill? Unlikely.

IF LAMBETH LABOUR WANT TO SUPPORT BALLOTS ON ESTATES SCHEDULED FOR DEMOLITION IN THE FUTURE – WHY NOT NOW? What the hell difference does it make?

And see that last bit under (v) ? Still blaming the Tory Government.

The Green party motion then states:

Council further notes that
 
It was stated at Lambeth council’s cabinet meeting on 23 March 2017 that 55 per cent  of council tenants on Central Hill estate appeared to support the proposal to completely rebuild their estate. 

The Labour motion changes the first part to read:

Council further notes that
 
Lambeth has been engaging with residents on six estates since 2014, holding extensive consultation and engagement on how to deliver better homes where refurbishment is unaffordable; changes ‘appeared to’ to read ‘did’ and adds: with 34pc of tenants being opposed to rebuilding, as set out in the independent report presented to cabinet.

1. You haven’t engaged. You only ‘engage’ with people who don’t disagree with you.

2: Residents don’t believe your so-called consultation figures – some residents on Central Hill saying they could not see what answers the consultants were writing on their clipboards.

3: Refurbishment is only unaffordable because you have left peoples homes to rot while spending absolute fortunes on consultants.

Labour’s next amendment deletes all of the following from the Green motion:
 
A subsequent council report authorised by Sue Foster, strategic director, neighbourhoods and growth to the council’s overview and scrutiny committee on 3rd May 2017 stated clearly “The consultation was not a ballot.” Council also notes that the 55pc figure was strongly disputed by residents and was not backed up by evidence from the council, which created a huge amount of distrust amongst residents.

So – delete any suggestion that residents disputed something. OR that something was not backed up by evidence from the council. OR that there is a huge amount of distrust among residents. , Eat your heart out George Orwell. This isn’t 1984. This is Lambeth 2018.

Curiously, Labour have left the bit in that reads: (iii) Vauxhall Constituency Labour Party passed a motion in January 2018 calling for the Lambeth Labour election manifesto to ballot residents living on estates that are due to be ‘regenerated’.

Interesting. Probably an oversight. Let’s see if there’s further amendments. Maybe they need to keep Vauxhall Labour and their councillors onside?

The following is also deleted by Labour from the Green party motion:

(iii) Not only must the consequences of the ballot result be fully understood by all concerned, but the process needs to be – and be seen to be – independent of all those involved in the regeneration project, all parties must have an equality of campaigning and financial resources, the questions need to be clear and agreed by all parties, and the outcome of the ballot must be transparent and accountable.

So: No ballots. And therefore nothing to be transparent and accountable about.

Labour then finish off destroying the Green party motion by deleting in its entirety the main part of the motion:

Council therefore resolves to ballot all the residents of the Central Hill Estate, Cressingham Gardens Estate and the Fenwick Estate based on the principles on (i) and (ii) above and notes that along with giving some control over their future back to the residents of those estates, if the residents on Central Hill voted for demolition then this would give the council access to additional funds from the Mayor of London.

and adding instead:

“(iv) That the council’s response to the Mayor’s consultation supported the use of independent bodies throughout the consultation process, not just for ballots, as Lambeth council has done on each of the six estates currently going through this process.
 
Council resolves to continue to place residents at the heart of the decision-making process, by working with the Mayor of London on his estate regeneration principles and fully implementing his recommendations when published….

What estate regeneration principles? How can doing deals in secret be an estate regeneration principle?
 
……Council supports the ambitious programme in the Labour Party’s Green Paper, Housing for the Many, which sets out how a Labour Government would tackle the Tory housing crisis by investing in social and council housing and providing councils with access to new powers, flexibility and funding to provide decent homes that are currently denied to them by this government.”

So – carry on blaming the wicked Tory Government hiss boo rather than Lambeth Labour’s complete and utter incompetence in running a council. A council that thinks consultation is just having to sit there and shut their minds while people tell them what they are doing is wrong. The dictionary definition of consultation is to listen AND DISCUSS. Lambeth don’t listen. They certainly don’t discuss.

The Labour amendments to this motion sum up everything that was wrong with the last council during the four years and everything that is alrready wrong with the new council – after just two months. Nothing has changed. If anything, judging by this latest nonsense, it’s got worse.

The Labour amendments to this motion are certain to go through at next Wednesday’s council meeting because the Labour lemmings* who call themselves Labour councillors will vote the way they are told to.

For the benefit of new readers, News From Crystal Palace has consistently held the view that Lambeth Labour only listen to organisations and people who agree with them 100 per cent.
 
To get an idea of the past history just have a look at some of the stories posted under Lambethwatch.
 
News From Crystal Palace rarely if ever criticises Croydon, Lewisham or Southwark councils – all under Labour control. Neither have we criticised the three MPs for the area – Helen Hayes, Steve Reed and Ellie Reeves. All of them Labour MPs.
 
Amazingly, no-one at Labour party head office appears to have a clue of what’s going on at Lambeth council.
 
And how the national newspapers have failed to pick up on some of the stories we have published – including the recent revelation from People’s Audit Lambeth that some Labour councillors are giving some of their salaries paid for by Lambeth’s ratepayers directly to Lambeth Labour funds – beggars belief.

*LEMMINGS: (Source: Wikipedia) Lemmings have become the subject of a widely popular misconception that they commit mass suicide when they migrate by jumping off cliffs. This urban myth became widespread after this behaviour was shown in the Walt Disney documentary White Wilderness (film) in 1958. However, the animals in the film are not wild animals jumping off the cliff voluntarily, rather they were bought by the producers and pushed over the edge of the cliff. Instead of suicidal behavior, what explains the drastic fluctuations in population size are environmental factors such as whether the right kind of snow is available.

Lemmings also appear in Arthur C. Clarke’s 1953 short story “The Possessed”, where their suicidal urges are attributed to the lingering consciousness of an alien group mind which had inhabited the species in the prehistoric past.

A twist is put on the myth in the 2016 picture book Leaping Lemmings!, when one lemming refuses to jump off cliffs with the others as a lesson in thinking for yourself………………………

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