Sunday, September 16, 2007

Brighton Beach

The annual Liberal Democrat Conference has started at Brighton. I arrived last night after a problem free train journey - well done all 3 companies. We even had time for a walk along the beach and to watch people younger and more energetic than us playing volleyball and other active games.
My night was disturbed by the return of a rather raucous stag party, but Suzanne managed to sleep right through it!
So far today I've managed to be part of a consultation on housing with our Front Bench spokesmen on the subject and lots of other councillors and party members from around the country. It was good to get agreement from them that VAT needs changing on house building and refurbishment so that there's less incentive to knock down those lovely houses on Yarm Road in Eaglescliffe, Leven Road in Yarm and similar parts of Fairfield, Norton and Hartburn. We also had agreement that planning for the new homes needed in an area should be the prerogative of the local authority and not diktats from on high.
Then on to a fringe meeting about breaking the vicious cycle of offending, prison, release, re-offend. Lots of good ideas there which make good economic sense as well as being right from a social justice standpoint.
Now I've located the internet cafe I can do this quick catchup before going into the debate on whether to support an academic boycott of Israel, a subject which I've read a fair bit about and fear is being treated far too simplistically.

No comments: