Friday, 25 January 2008

The bloody Tory squabble part 29




I've lost count of all the different bits of petty vindictiveness visited on the Dukes Ward Tories-who are by any measure the most sucessful Tories in Southport. They have held all their seats on Sefton council since it was set up and are certainly the safest seat they have. Nevertheless the bloody squabble continues with petty revenge. More will certainly follow. The electorate don't like parties that are riven with in fighting-witness the Labour wilderness years and the Tory collapse during the Major government.
Head to head the popular David Pearson and Brenda Porter



COUNCILLOR DAVID PEARSON REMOVED FROM ALL COMMITTEES BY SEFTON CONSERVATIVE GROUP

The Conservative Group on Sefton Council have stripped embattled Dukes Ward Councillor David Pearson of every single one of his committee places on the Council. Committees of the Council are where much of the real business gets done so removing a councillor from all committees deprives the voters of the ward concerned of effectiveness for their councillor.

Councillor Pearson is the respected former Mayor of Sefton and has served for over 16 years. as a Conservative councillor for Dukes Ward (this covers Southport Town Centre and Shoreside, Birkdale.)

Members of all political parties were stunned at last Thursday’s Council meeting when the Conservative Group leadership read out 9 changes in Tory Committee places which had the effect of removing Councillor Pearson from all his committees (see below for full details).

This latest action by the Conservative Group leadership of Councillors Paula Parry and Brenda Porter is a slap in the face for the Conservatives' Area Appeals Committee, who upheld a successful appeal from Councillor Pearson before Christmas.

Dukes Ward Councillor David Pearson had originally been suspended in November 2007 for six months from the local authority’s Conservative Group. The charges against Cllr Pearson included "being too outspoken", "having too loud a voice", "being too friendly with the Liberal Democrats" and "not being a team player".

The appeals committee determined that Councillor Pearson ‘s suspension should be reduced from six months to two. But it now appears that the Sefton Conservative Group have decided to ignore the finding of the Appeals Committee.

Normally, changes in Council committee places are agreed automatically, but this time Birkdale Liberal Democrat Councillor Simon Shaw spoke out at he Council meeting to question the move.

Cllr Shaw asked the Legal Director whether it was right for the Conservative Group to have as many committee places as they were claiming since they were no longer treating Councillor Pearson as one of their members.

“The Conservatives say they have 19 councillors out of 66, so that entitles them to a proportionate number of committee places,” said Councillor Shaw.

“However if David Pearson is no longer a member of the Tory Group they only have 18 councillors. That would mean they are entitled to fewer places.”

“It rather looks as if the Conservatives want to ‘have their cake and eat it’. They want to be able to count Councillor Pearson as a member of their Group when it suits them, but not when it doesn’t.”

“Their treatment of Councillor Pearson is nothing short of a disgrace,” said Councillor Shaw.

SEFTON COUNCIL MEETING 17th JANUARY 2008
DRAFT MINUTES (excerpt)

CHANGES TO MEMBERSHIP OF COMMITTEES ETC FOR 2007/08

Councillor Platt proposed the following additional changes:

● Councillor T. Jones to replace Councillor Pearson as a Member of the Scrutiny and Review Committee (Regeneration and Environmental Services) and Councillor D. Jones to be substitute for Councillor T. Jones on the Committee.

● Councillor Papworth to become Vice-Chair of the Scrutiny and Review Committee (Regeneration and Environmental Services) (in place of Councillor Pearson) and Councillor Sir Ron Watson to be substitute for Councillor Papworth on the Committee.

● Councillor Bigley to replace Councillor Pearson as substitute for Councillor Glover on the Planning Committee.

● Councillor McIvor to replace Councillor Pearson as a Member of the Scrutiny and Review Committee (Health and Social Care).

● Councillor McIvor to replace Councillor Byrom as a Member of the Audit and Governance Committee and Councillor Papworth to be substitute for Councillor McIvor on the Committee.

● Councillor Papworth to replace Councillor Pearson as substitute for Councillor Sir Ron Watson on the Local Joint Consultative Committee.

● Councillor Glover to replace Councillor Pearson as substitute for Councillor Doran on the Joint Consultative Committee for Teaching Staffs.

● Councillor T. Jones to replace Councillor Pearson as a Member of the Sefton Borough Partnership Neighbourhood Regeneration Thematic Group.

● Councillor Porter to replace Councillor Pearson as a Member of the Lord Street Steering Group.