Talking Politics: Why not call it ‘Collinsdale’!

Lib Dem leader Janet Battye and Labour leader 'Tim Swift
Lib Dem leader Janet Battye and Labour leader 'Tim Swift

It’s nice to see that after the collapse of the coalition between Labour and the Liberals in Calderdale that the three main parties are all friends again.

As we saw at last week’s annual council meeting, the seats for scrutiny chairs were shared out by the three main political parties.

Who would have thought that spitting your dummy out and not producing an alternative budget or putting forward any amendments could get you all the positions you wanted. I just hope the Conservatives have realised that they may be holding a poison chaise. They will now have to keep within the budget set by the old coalition.

It is a shame that the three main parties haven’t recognised the hard work and commitment given by Coun Colin Raistrick as chair of children and young people’s services. He hasn’t even been given a seat on the scrutiny panel this time. I was told it would have been too complicated to have put him on this panel. It seems that playing politics is more important than having the right person in the right job.

It would also appear that the Labour group has been listening to what the Conservatives have been saying about cutting the number of councillors. I would just like to remind them that we still have 51 councillors. But it looks like we may only need one.

As Coun Barry Collins has been elected as deputy leader of the council, cabinet member for Economic and Environment and chair of Governance and Business. He is also deputy leader of the Labour group. Maybe this is a way for the council to save money as a member can only claim his allowance as a councillor and one other allowance.

Maybe it’s time we forgot about the Conservatives’ idea of merging Calderdale MBC and Kirklees and just rename our borough ‘Collinsdale’.

But that aside I do hope we can now have a more balanced and grown up debate about what the people of Calderdale MBC need in the way of services and how we provide them.