4th April 2017 - Dramatic narrative - and a change in the air?
Give us one good reason...
Friday's contract analysis from Community R4C, framed dramatically by a narrative overview from Jeremy Irons (https://youtu.be/XyQ11hlY7ic) and attended by BBC, ITV, radio and local press, made it crystal clear:
- The Javelin Park contract is anti-competitive and may be unlawful
- Gloucestershire would save almost £4.7m per annum just by stopping the contract now and using alternative regional waste processing which has capacity already (and up to £10m if using best recycling technology)
- cancelling will be nearer £30m than the £100m feared - and that money is already available so won't affect budgets
Irons also strongly emphasized the toxic nature of incineration and highlighted that this remains the most serious concern for residents given that 20,000 children go to school within a few miles of Javelin Park. You can hear him on BBC radio here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p04w8qwj (9 minutes in) and there is local coverage here: http://bit.ly/2osfAbT - no doubt more to come.
And clearly demonstrating that there is support from all corners of the political spectrum, TaxPayers Alliance spokesman Tom Banks expressed the TPA's outrage at the situation in Gloucestershire - in particular the transparency scandal highlighted by the recent tribunal judgement. In no uncertain terms he underlined that for elected leaders to use public money to sit on information on how our taxes are being spent is completely unacceptable.
Announcement from District Council leader
Steve Lydon, leader of Stroud District Council, also attended on Friday, and announced that once the new County Council convenes in May, Labour will be calling for a halt to the contract and a full investigation.
Run-up to County Council elections
It is now up to us to make sure that all County Council candidates for the May elections are aware this is an issue we care about. We will provide more information on how to do this soon, as GCC should be publishing details this week of who is standing in which areas.
Community R4C meanwhile has said it will be producing a summary of key points from Friday's contract analysis report and will make this generally available, so we can share it on this mailing list too. This could be very helpful when communicating with candidates.
There's a change in the air. Let's catch it.
PS it has also been a week of photo stunts - if you're a Facebook user, click and share!