Posted by: westlancashirerecord | March 22, 2019

Choose Your Friends Carefully

Guess who would want Amber Rudd, the Remain-supporting Cabinet minister, as a friend.

Rudd has not been shy about criticising Theresa May over Brexit, most notably in a newspaper article last month demanding the Prime Minister takes no deal off the table.

But yesterday the MP for Hastings and Rye, which voted “Leave” adopted a new line of attack, using concern among locals about the future of Hastings pier to make a wider point about the Brexit talks. In a “Dear Resident” letter, dated March 21 and sent to all of her constituents, Ms Rudd used “the pier” and the “Pier owner” as analogies for the troubles with the Withdrawal Agreement and Mrs May’s lack of communication skills.

Sam’s “friendship” with Theresa May came to a sticky end

Odd couples?

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | March 22, 2019

Revocation Of Article 50 Not Politically Doable

Article 50 author responds to petition

The man who wrote Article 50 did not imagine his own country would be the one to use it. The revocation of Article 50 “isn’t politically doable” without a general election or referendum, the cross-bench peer who wrote the clause has said. Responding to a petition that passed 2 million signatures, Lord Kerr of Kinlochard said “One would have to go back to the people to get authority to do something different from what the people asked for”.

The peer who wrote Article 50 says it was drafted to protect EU countries against “Eastern European dictators” who did not abide by western values. It was a way of reducing the “legal chaos” if an unruly member decided to suddenly quit the bloc. Speaking on Wednesday evening, he said “We were thinking of a situation of which a country did not respect democracy, the rule of law, free press, that sort of thing”.

He continued “What we were devising was a procedure to try to reduce the legal chaos and uncertainty of somebody storming out in a huff. We never thought a grown-up, stable, democratic, Western European society would use Article 50”. 

Commons leader Andrea Leadsom

dismissed the petition as not being on the same scale as the pro-Brexit vote in the 2016 referendum. “Should it reach 17.4 million respondents then I am sure there will be a very clear case for taking action” she told MPs.

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | March 21, 2019

Wally Westley Writes

Hullo, it’s me again.

I need your vote in May. And I want to tell you that we, the party that I’ve been dragging into oblivion, have clutched at the straw of the Labour Local Plan and we are on the march. We need to win just 8 seats in May, which, lucky for you, will restore me to my former glory as your council leader.

Of course, there have been some events that have led you to feel disappointed by my performance when I was your great leader. There was that huge faux pas when I announced plans to work with neighbouring authorities to improve economic growth. We had none!

We joined the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority (LCRCA) as an Associate Member to help put West Lancashire in an even better position to take advantage of opportunities for skills development and the creation of new jobs. Another of my pipe dreams gone wrong, just as I was on the Skelmersdale retail jobs shambles. How was I to know?

But never mind all that

Labour’s failure is costing you £80,000 a month. When my Conservatives were in control of West Lancs Borough Council we froze Council Tax for 6 years. We cut waste and improved efficiency through joint working with other local authorities and commercial partners. We did have the government local grant support scheme but we’ll not discuss that here.

Over the last 4 years Labour have increased your council tax bill by 12%, imposed their £30 wheelie bin tax and increased fees and charges on a whole range of council services. Labour are having to plunder the council reserves at the rate of £80,000 a month to fund an ever widening budget gap. Now, this is nothing to do with austerity, nor the government scrapping the national council tax benefit scheme. It’s Labour’s irresponsible management of the council finances that’s reminiscent of the last Labour Government and typical of the Hard Left’s approach to public finance. It’s nothing to do with our Tory government austerity programme, I promise you.

What else can I promise you?

Well, no ifs no buts, we will scrap labour’s local plan.

We will support local shops.

OK, those aren’t new shops, but never mind that. It comes a bit late to save the Spar, in my ward, but we will support existing shops, our Tory government has provided money for a Business Rate Discount Scheme for retailers. Lucky for Town Green Co-op, eh?

I mustn’t forget that we Conservatives fund bus services. We appreciate the importance of local bus services, particularly for rural communities. Despite that time when we invented social exclusion of elderly and disabled people we are again going to make viability dependent on passenger numbers. OK, I agree it’s not a social service, it must make money! That’s what we do!

Cheerio for now

Wally

 

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | March 21, 2019

Brexit Latest

 

 

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | March 20, 2019

Currie Trespassing To Deliver Litter

A friend suggested I look at the Cllr Currie twit-tweet

as he has shown himself having delivered Wally Westley election litter to my home. Sure enough, there it is, Currie trespassing…silly boy!

Currie wrote “Smashing the #torycanvass in my own ward this evening for my colleague and group leader David Westley who is up for election this May. I hope the rain holds”.

Well, personally I hope he got soaked. And let’s face it, it’s quite clear that one village, Haskayne,  was missing its idiot last night!

Reminded me Currie tweeted last February

“Out in Burscough today delivering leaflets for @Conservatives #campaign18. Coffee @BoothsCountry first naturally. If you live around here and see me do say hello/hurl some abuse. It makes me feel relevant”.

“So having asked for abuse he got some after which he tweeted “One chap just told me he would wipe his arse with my @Conservatives leaflet. I felt awful. Nobody should put up with that. Fortunately I’ve just been shopping so gifted him a roll of my Andrex aloe vera. To his credit he laughed and thanked me. Always happy to help!”

“Just confirms he’s a bum councillor then?”

And he still is!

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | March 20, 2019

Potty Pothole Claims

Included in the Wally Westley re-election manifesto

is the claim of “£5M more to repair potholes” and “The Conservatives at Lancashire County Council prioritise the pothole problem inherited from the previous Labour Administration”.

All of which is a fallacy as proved by the total inability of the Aughton & Downholland elected members, particularly Cllr Currie and Cllr O’Toole, to solve the ever deepening pavement potholes at Granville Park

 

which Cllr Currie describes as frustrating. It’s more than that, it is downright neglect that may cause someone to have a serious injury. And for a candidate to claim this prioritises the pothole problem is a disgraceful misrepresentation of the local situation in this ward.

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | March 20, 2019

Alastair Wobbled

and considered backing the deal, but realized he was wrong.

We often feature Alastair MacMillan, who runs White House Products, a company which exports to over 100 countries around the world including to customers in every other EU state.

He writes today

“After the various votes of last week I felt that following the removal of the UK’s last little bit of leverage through the removal of “No Deal” from the negotiating table, the only option was for Brexiteers to vote through the flawed Withdrawal Agreement. I have great respect for Michael Howard and other prominent Brexiteers advocating that eurosceptic MPs hold their noses and vote through the deal. I was in agreement with them at the end of last week, but over the weekend realised that I had been sucked too far into the No Brexit vortex.

“My reasoning for suggesting they vote for the proposed Withdrawal Agreement was that although the deal is awful, it does mean that we are at least out of the EU and we should at least bank that small gain. However, under the terms of the proposed Withdrawal Agreement, for the transition period, we won’t be out at all but instead virtually a full member but without any form of representation in the European Parliament or Commission. This is a worse situation than being a full voting member!

“The second point that struck me is that we are all appalled by the Prime Minister’s inability

to negotiate a good deal for Britain. It is therefore essential that she is not involved in the next phase and that we have someone of higher calibre in charge. However, if her Withdrawal Agreement is voted through then we are effectively handing her the keys for the next phase which would pile disaster on disaster.

“The third point was this: why should we be afraid of an extension until December 2020 as suggested by some in the EU? The transition period was due to run until then and as explained above this would have been without representation at any level. If it comes to it, we should take up this offer and use the time to renegotiate the Withdrawal Agreement under a new leader now fully aware of how the EU operates and then leave properly at the end of the extension. In the meantime we would have European Parliament elections which I would expect to reinforce and reinvigorate the 2016 referendum vote.

“Despite exporting a large percentage of our products to the EU, my preference still remains going WTO on 29th March as that gives us a clean Brexit now and we are then able to move on quicker. My second preference, which is about as likely as hell freezing over, is a short delay of weeks to dot the Is and cross the Ts of a WTO/No Deal exit. My third preference is remaining in the EU under an Article 50 extension until December 2020 and in that time negotiating a new Withdrawal Agreement whilst being fully prepared to walk away and leave without a deal.

“Ironically it is by calling the Prime Minister’s bluff and seeing the threat of an Article 50 extension as an opportunity that can put the UK in a much stronger position long term. It is essential that the negotiating balance is reset and these, at this time, are the only ways of doing that”.

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | March 20, 2019

Lies Told Door To Door

Who said “Lies were told door to door”?

Yes, you’ve remembered, Aughton & Downholland Cllr Wally Westley at the time of the last (Tory) local plan. But no lies were told by Aughton residents campaigning against the proposed desecration of Parrs Lane, some of the finest agricultural land in West Lancashire.

Now, Westley claims he “cares passionately about a range of local issues. In particular, protecting our precious greenbelt from unnecessary development”. He has, he really has! Some people just don’t have any shame!

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | March 20, 2019

The 1000 Day Brexit Cock-up (Conspiracy)

Daniel Hannan MEP

writes “Politicians will sacrifice anything to meet Brussels’ requirements. The EU is not only undemocratic in itself; it also degrades the internal democracy of its constituent nations.

“Everyone knows that the EU is run by unelected officials. What is far less widely appreciated is the way that, in order to sustain a fundamentally oligarchic project, the member states are obliged repeatedly to distort their domestic constitutional arrangements.

“The EU’s Hideous Strength manifests itself in the readiness of politicians and institutions at the national level to act against their interests for the sake of deeper integration. To put it another way, as well as being undemocratic in itself, in the sense of being run by unelected officials, the EU frequently requires its member states to give up a measure of their domestic democracy in order to sustain the requirements of closer union.

“The politicisation of the HoC Speaker’s chair after 300 years is just the latest example of what I call the EU’s Hideous Strength.

“This is what the Speaker said a few weeks ago

when he allowed a Remainer amendment. “I am not in the business of invoking precedent” He was cheered by the same people cheering him now after he DID invoke precedent. Marvel at the EU’s “Hideous Strength”. It doesn’t just subvert national institutions, it undoes its supporters’ capacity for fairness or logic”.

Posted by: westlancashirerecord | March 19, 2019

Westley Seeks Re-election To The Borough Council

News Snippets From Wally Westley

Among the “gems” of the “Conservatives news from Aughton, Downholland & Altcar” is a claim that “Conservatives Want Fewer Councillors & Elections”.

Oh dear. We’ve been here a long time ago, in 2010, to be precise. That was a time when Cllr Westley was the old version of the current Chancellor of the Exchequer, known as “Spreadsheet Phil”. We had “Spreadsheet Wally”. The questions of the day included potential exit costs of £1.477m arising from staff redundancies while pensioners could lose their travel concession.

We also had the mind blowing logic on taxes from Cllr May Blake that “It is not funded by the taxpayer other than all taxes are drawn ultimately from taxpayers”…one for posterity?

Anyway, I asked Wally some questions

in 2010 about the need for 54 councillors, and below are the precise records of emails of the exchanges.

15 August 2010 Email to Cllr D Westley cc to Kim Webber, Ian Grant, Cllr. “Why do we need 54 councillors? Surely we could get rid of about one third of them with a little judicious thought? That would lead to a smaller council, a smaller cabinet (less expenses) and a smaller administration, smaller salaries for the highly paid senior staff who would have less responsibility, smaller premises and the sale of some of the capital assets we own?”

16 August 2010 from Westley David “The number of Borough Councillors is set by the Government and the Boundary Commission. My personal view is that there are too many and that the number could be reduced by 50%”. [Even more drastic than my one third!]

16 August 2010 Email to Cllr D Westley “As for the number of councillors, why don’t you instigate a review of WLBC with the Boundary Commission? Perhaps the county might be trimmed down too?

16 August 2010 from Westley David “There are 84 County Councillors representing the 1.1 million people in Lancashire or another way there are 8 County Councillors covering the 108k people in West Lancashire. The County’s annual budget is a massive £1.4billion and the Councillors are very busy people.

“I would not want to waste money on a Boundary Commission Review or the resultant election. There are far more important matters and it would only be an unnecessary distraction. Besides there are other related issues such as West Lancs having only one election every 4 years rather than the 3 current in place or sorting out the anomaly of wards having 1, 2 or 3 councillors. Halsall Ward has a single councillor and the electorate vote twice in a 4 year cycle i.e. once for LCC & once for WLBC. Aughton & Downholland Ward has three councillors and you vote every year i.e. the first 2 years have borough elections followed by a county election and then another borough election”.

Sheer lunacy

Just to be sure of the sheer lunacy of the policy Westley now claims for 2019, which he could have augmented when in office in 2010, we council tax payers have continued to fund 50% more per annum for the costs of the elected members than he actually proposed. And he of all people mentions in his reasoning that “West Lancashire Borough Council would save at least £150,000 a year and help the Council fund important frontline services”.

To which WE might ask, what services would £1,350,000 have funded over those 9 years?  Westley took two days in 2010 to argue for and against elected member reductions. What will come next? Another unnecessary distraction?

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