Update to 30th June

30th June 2019

My activity update to 30 June as College Wards’ Residents Association Councillor by Cllr. Nigel Collin

The period leading up to the end of June has been informative, challenging and interesting.

The planning meeting on 30 May was guillotined at 11 pm and was completed on 3 June. Committee members approved all the applications but required certain amendments to be made under the officer’s delegated powers regime.

I attended a presentation on the Heathrow proposals, given by a team from Heathrow on 4 June and, like several fellow Councillors, I am concerned about the potential noise impact of the proposals. An open meeting is scheduled from 2-8 pm on 9 August at Bourne Hall.

On 11 June I attended the Local Committee’s induction meeting. The Local Committee is a partnership committee with Surrey County Council (SCC). As residents may know SCC, controls the repairs to highways and pavements and is responsible for instigating yellow lines and parking restrictions in general. The budget is constrained and so not everything can be done when requested. The year ends in May thus anything requested as of today will not be recorded until the end of May 2020 and will then be considered at the Local Committee meeting in September. Depending on budgets, a request made up to the end of May 2020 may be deferred for a further year which means in practice it will first be considered in September 2021. I feel that this is unsatisfactory, and it may be possible to expedite urgent issues (usually safety related) by referring these to Tina Mountain, the SCC Councillor responsible for highways.

The Chantilly Twinning AGM was held in the evening and it was agreed that research into the possible twinning of two other towns in Europe would be examined.

On 14 June my wife and I participated in the Mayor’s first charity event a visit to the Silent Pool gin distillery near Guildford, a great event for a good cause and a visit is highly recommended.

On 18 June the Financial Policy Panel met, and the good news is that the actual spend in 2019/20 was under budget.

On 24 June the Local Committee met at Bourne Hall, the room was full of residents and two petitions were presented for consideration by the Committee, neither of which related to College ward.

On 25 June the Audit, Crime & Disorder and Scrutiny Committee met Joe Easterbrook, the Borough Commander for Epsom and Ewell who reported that crime statistics year on year had fallen across all categories with the largest fall being in reported vehicle crime which had fallen by 55.5%. He advised that there are shortly to be 2 more full time officers in his team.  I have the Commander’s email and am happy to provide this to any resident in need of high-level police engagement.

Several residents may have seen a recent Liberal Democrat flyer referring to me by name in relation to my Planning Committee appointment and South Hatch stables. Sadly, both points made were erroneous for the following reasons. Proportionality dictates the number of seats allocated to a party and, with only two counsellors, the Liberal Democrats were ineligible for a seat on the Planning Committee.

In connection with the South Hatch stables planning application, the day after the election, I had a meeting with the Council’s Chief Legal Officer and, arising from that conversation, I elected to withdraw from consideration of the application since I could not honestly consider it with an open mind.

In summary, I was not barred but elected to withdraw in order to best serve the interests of my ward’s residents.

Despite my committee commitments and my increasing case work, I will never be too busy to attend to residents’ issues.

Finally, I am abroad from 1 to 16 July, please address any issues via email to info@collegeward.org, thank you.