Roadshow turns to rubbish over pink sack plans

Council leader Pete Marland at the roadshow
Council leader Pete Marland at the roadshow

The first of six city roadshows tackling burning questions on council budget cuts was held this week.

Last month Labour councillors revealed plans to slash £22million off their budget from April by targeting adult and children services.

Thirteen people (including four Tory councillors) turned out to Oxley Park on Tuesday afternoon.

Following a presentation by council leader Pete Marland, the public asked questions about plans to increase council tax, changes to waste collection and cuts to children’s transport services.

There were also concerns raised over past plans to axe wardens from sheltered housing, which the Citizen successfully campaigned to save.

During the two-hour meeting, Mr Marland went head to head with Tory group leader Edith Bald who slammed his idea to spend £500,000 on buying hessian bags over pink sacks.

She said: “I believe this to be a high risk idea. It will be a big behavioural change for people. Can the council be sure half a million pounds will be worth it?”

Mr Marland explained that a growing demand and decreasing grants from government has put “pressure” on delivering public services.

Last year the council was criticised for holding budget roadshows during working hours.

This time round, however, there are just two of six roadshows during January being held in the afternoon.

> The following roadshows are being held:

6pm on 7 Jan - West Bletchley Council Offices

6pm on 12 Jan - The Olney Centre

2pm on 13 Jan - Stantonbury Leisure Centre

6pm on 14 Jan - Monkston Park Community Centre

6pm on 19 Jan - Christ the Cornerstone Church