Monday, February 15, 2010

Environment committee met today for the 2nd time this year to hear that the action plan resulting from our carbon management review still isn't complete. Apparently it needs "tidying up". So do a few other things. Like the fact that the action plan to combat dog fouling is stuck on stage 1. It's written on paper but that's as far as it's gone and the issue of dog fouling in parts of the borough is as bad as ever. It's almost enought to make some of us want to bring in some spectacular punishments for irresponsible owners.
There was a lot of monitoring information brought to the committee but it brought up more questions than answers so more meetings are needed to sort them out. One committee member expressed it very well when he said that members of the public put dog fouling very near the top of their lists of problems they want us to deal with. No-one ever puts Customer First at the top of the list and very few put energy saving or green travel there, important as we know they are.
Update sessions with the council officers responsible for children's welfare in the borough are always slightly depressing. Social work is a bit of a cinderella service in every council - absolutely essential but not really loved. A succession of high profile abuse cases have made the problem worse. It's not the kind of glamorous career that most young people want to take up and it's getting harder to fill senior posts with all the responsibility they include. Yet our children and vulnerable adults need the best we can give. A conundrum which is no nearer a solution than it was at this time last year. No easy answers on the horizon either.
And amidst it all, the news that there will be an Independent Parliamentary candidate in Stockton South, someone with quite a high profile in some parts of the constituency already. Exciting times ahead. Quote from the BBC Politics Show website:

Yvonne Hossacks hopes to get elected in Stockton South. The Northamptonshire solicitor has recently decided to stand. She says she'll focus on protecting the rights of people with disabilities.

"I'm passionate about protecting the weak and the sick. I will not be bound by a party whip. I'm standing partly as an act of rage against the current system."

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