Arguments are flying back and forth over the issue of the Library. The Council and others are looking to a plan which is not just about the Central Library.
It is about the revitalisation of the town centre. Others stand opposed to a new library in a different part of town. They are concerned about the location of the new site in relation to the bus station and they don’t trust the council.
I believe that the amendment passed at full council in December was clear. It proposed a consultation and this clearly must involve asking people if they would prefer keeping the old library and refurbishing it or building a new library on a new site with significant maintenance savings.
To date the people of Halifax have not been asked the first question and they must be.
The hole at the heart of the development has been consultation. I am pleased therefore that when the Labour Group met on Monday January 9 they were able to agree the following as part of an overall approach:
“this Labour Group considers the Library Consultation to be too narrow. It must include questions on refurbishment of the current library as an alternative to a Library on a new site in order to conform to the motion on consultation passed at full Council in December.”
I am pleased that the view of the Labour Group is that the Council needs to move forward to a new stage of consultation putting all the options. There must be questions asking people if they would prefer a re-furbished library to a new library on a different site.
I have always argued for full consultation from prior to the council meeting to the recent Labour Group.
It now only needs our Liberal Democrat Coalition partners to come on board
People must be allowed a voice.
Cllr Dave Draycott