This blog is a political blog from a left-of-centre perspective. This is not specifically a party political blog, but does have a Lib Dem orientation. Constructive enagement with radical liberals, social democrats / democratic socialists and greens is particularly welcomed.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Torbay Tory Campaign and Stupid Tory Pledge

As many will be aware we have an all-powerful executive mayor in Torbay, along with a Conservative 'cabinet'. The greater number of councillors are currently Lib Dem. An uneasy period of 'co-habitation' since October 2005 has been the result.

The thin-skinned mayor is not keen on being challenged and held to account by the Lib Dems, despite the limited powers these councillors have.

In their local election materials on the one hand the Conservatives boast of his achievements since being in power. On the other hand they ask if people are fed up with this Lib Dem run council. It seems like they can't even decide if they run the council or not.

The combined 'achievements' of the mayor and his Tory allies to date include :

* Closure and / or privatisation of care homes against fierce opposition from the people of both Torquay and Brixham.

* 'Success' in winning in their bid to 'regenerate' Torquay via their casino bid - again, yes you've guessed it, despite overwhelming opposition to the plan from local residents. Naturally they were never asked for their view.

* Made a complete hash of the change in the senior citizens concessionary bus pass scheme. This was done behind closed doors without even reference to the LD Transport 'Champion'. The actual implementation of the new scheme looks to have swallowed up much of the cash that was to be saved by the change of policy, due to a lack of foresight in issuing the revised pass.

* Mayor Bye getting elected as a 'Conservative' but tried [unsuccessfully] for several months to pass himself off as an 'Independent' despite continuing to be active in a local Conservative Association !

Still his colleagues have come up with a list of priorities for the first 100 days of a Tory council which include the tackling of the issue teenage pregnancies. This from people who already control the council and make a hash of even a bus pass scheme. You really couldn't make this stuff up.

Still it is a pledge and moves on from the executive mayor election campaign where the Tory winner offered a vision of a 'cleaner, safer, more prosperous bay'. Try reversing this and find me a candidate of ANY party seeking a crime infested, litter strewn and poverty stricken bay.

Torbay - the place where pantomime and politics meet !


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