It might have occurred to readers of WLR that over recent times, vitriolic claptrap has been the forte of people who not only insult their electorate as in the “Aughton Doorstep Liars” and the “Backward Aughton Residents” episodes but who walk out of Council meetings so as to leave their local electorate without representation. And those same readers might wonder if the “walkers” will claim their full members’ allowance for part-time attendance? Or might they be considered redundant?
A Press Release from the Labour Leader states “Councillors and local residents were left shocked on Wednesday night following a Full Council meeting of West Lancashire Borough in which the entire Conservative Party abandoned the meeting only part way through. On the agenda for the meeting were seven important issues for debate, discussion and decision ranging from supporting small businesses in Ormskirk and West Lancashire to campaigning for a Government Older People’s Ministerial role.
In response to Cllr John Bullock’s motion to try and better balance the tax burden on local small businesses that seem to be disadvantaged in comparison to larger multinational companies, the Conservative Leader Cllr David Westley replied that the motions were “pointless” and that he and his colleagues would be leaving the Chamber. This happened just a few minutes after 9pm, with the meeting not closing until 10pm.This left many many thousands of residents from across the borough completely unrepresented with Tory Councillors laughing and waving as they exited, including most notably Cllrs John Mee of Tarleton and beaten parliamentary candidate Sam Currie of Aughton & Downholland.
The wards of West Lancashire left without a voice at the Council include Aughton Park, Aughton & Downholland, Hesketh-with-Becconsall [could that be the “Moon Walker? ], Newburgh, North Meols, Parbold, Rufford, Tarleton and Wrightington.
And Cllr Moran said “This is truly shocking and awful behaviour from the 21 elected and paid Conservative Councillors who refuse to take part in council proceedings and represent thousands of their residents. “Not only is this damaging to their own party and I’m sure voters will vent their frustrations at the next round of elections, but it does little to inspire confidence in those of us working hard to serve and better our communities.
“To refer to motions around women and state pension inequality, supporting small businesses across West Lancashire and the Night Markets in Ormskirk, council tax and student accommodation all as pointless defeats the purpose of local democracy. I’d like to assure all residents however that despite the mass Tory exodus last week, Labour Councillors from across the borough regardless of where we represent will continue to work to represent residents from the entire borough”. And this is the scene as the Tory benches are empty while Cllr Bullock addresses the meeting [click to enlarge].