Readers of The Bridge will have noticed in the latest issue that the Town Council will be raising their part of the council tax bill by 6% (an annual increase of £6.02p for St Ives households).
The final figure we will have to pay is likely to rise as the District and County Councils are also under pressure and may seek increases. The Fire Service are proposing 3% more and the Police and Crime commissioner, Jason Abblewhite, is surveying the public with three options (+2%, +12% or +60%), to see just how much we are prepared to pay for policing. He added £12 per household for additional officers, last year but there has been little sign of these extra policemen in St Ives (see article ‘New Neighbourhood Police Sergeant’ page 1).
Also in The Bridge was confirmation of this years annual Town Meeting, which once again is being held in The Corn Exchange with a Community Fair promoting some of the groups that help make St Ives the thriving community it is. The event will take place on Saturday 2nd March, with the Commuity Fair opening at 3pm and the ‘Question Time’ meeting starting at 6pm (the official rules state they should not start before then).
Your chance to have your say
It has been confirmed already that District Council Managing Director, Jo Lancaster and Police and Crime Commissioner and District Councillor, Jason Ablewhite, both St Ives residents, will attend along with The Mayor, Councillor Tim Drye and the Town Clerk, Alison Benfield. Normally town councillors attend, it’s their meeting after all, although not all do. There was some criticism last year that several of the town’s District Councillors didn’t attend. One reason given for not attending was concern that Ed Goodman, the compare, was biased. That seemed
a rather odd comment as those who attended saw an impartial and well hosted meeting. It is noted that Councillor Ryan Fuller is due to attend this year, in his position as the District’s Deputy Executive Leader and hopefully the other three St Ives District Councillors will attend as they are also town councillors.
The meeting is the one opportunity that the public have to ask questions of those people who manage our important services and plan for the town’s future. It is a critical time for St Ives, which has had little investment this century and councillors are due to develop a new Master Plan that will be effective over the next decade or more.
As The Riverporter has frequently reported, policing is a major issue, so this is your opportunity to question the Police and Crime Commissioner on these matters.