About 20 to 30 members of the public attended. The venue was good; so was the coffee.
Some of the public questions were as follows:
* Whether a rep from town council would be nominated to trustees of Dutch Cottage – this is expected to happen shortly
* The new recycling plans are good but what is being done to discourage plastic carrier bags (from onlinefocus regularAlison Mayor) – recycling team to respond at next meeting
* What is happening about the dog survey – Cabinet deciding tomorrow after reviewing results of survey
* Would the Council consider offering a place on the Cabinet to the oppostion as this is the case elsewhere such as in Basildon (from Alison Mayor) – the answer was NO – the council has an agreed system.
* Why should children have to put up with graffitti for years compared to graffitti on street furniture and a site visit to see the standard of cleanliness is suggested for the whole of Pearson Farm Estate (Janet Warner, resident from Sweyne Park ward )- an inspection of the area will be arranged
* What is happening to secure the long term future of the Grange Community Centre (Janet Warner ) – not answered directly
* It is rumoured the no 3 bus is ceasing at the end of the month. Can you confirm – will get back at the next meeting
* As of today why is there no police record of an accident in Rawreth Lane when I and others witnessed it and the young person was taken to hospital in an ambulance (From Rawreth parish Councillor Rita Coombs)-answer will come at the next meeting (Two Conservative Councillors got very heated at this point!)
* What is being done about the broken trees and increase in rubbish around the Rayleigh Leisure Centre – will report back at next meeting
* Pedestrians have been soaked by standing water when it rains on Rawreth Lane, what can be done – Highways will investigate, gulleys may need checking
Highways had very little of significance to say. Re Watery Lane the officers now intend to enforce and prosecute HGV vehicles using the route illegally –
The RAVS Chairman gave a long talk on the work of the organisation. Supportive words came from Cllr Humphries and somewhat persistent requests for information on salaries of staff came from Cllr Peter Webster.
The air quality report was presented with more technical jargon then we normally get. Caused quite a lot of “interesting” questions from some councillors who were possibly a tiny bit out of their depth.
Main spotlight issue was the announcement of major gas pipe replacement works to last a year and to affect 55km of pipeline in Rayleigh. The work will affect any property with cast iron pipes to their property or with the same in the street. Each house to be affected by work for up to 2 weeks with 1 metre width holes dug outside each affected property for smaller pipes to be laid inside the existing ones. Each affected house will need to be visited by a Corgi gas engineer to have their equipment “re commissioned” after the alterations.
Finally, a success for Jackie Dillnutt . She raised the issue of grafitti in playgrounds only being cleared up every three years. (She had been told before the meeting that there was no money from the successful lottery bid to fund this policy change. But she wanted the other councillors to be made aware in public and not have the issue forgotten.)
The end result was a vote (with no opposition) which referred the policy to the cabinet. We think this is the first time this has happened at a West Area Committee so far. We’ll see what the cabinet says on this – but we take grafitti seriously and won’t let the issue rest.