My own thoughts under:
1 b) Local Election 4th May - Results Round Up
My own Dudley MBC went from 45 Cons to 44 and from 25 for Labour to 27, with one Independent councillor. Tories down one, Labour up two because there was a vacancy.
It just shows how bleak, backward and barren my ghastly Black Country really is! No wonder they turn our disused railways into roads, offices, homes and tramways. While our half finished, principal, 120 Kms mainline railway has been turned into two different kinds of tramways on one 7 Kms section in Dudley, slap bang in the middle, would you believe!
However, two Dudley disused and forgotten railway lines have some intrepid walkers and cyclists (like me!) but are in such a disgraceful state, I call it the 22 Kms Black Country Cycle-Walk Mudway from Brierley Hill in Dudley to NW Wolverhampton.
"At present the citizens of Birmingham have little idea of what their Councillors are doing in the Combined Authority."
But they hear through news/media channels about what is being done in their name, can see with their own eyes and, as a result, very few citizens are at all interested or up in arms about it. They all agree with what is being done in their name. Apart from me, everyone else accepts the scandals, the idiocies and tragedies over the 50 years I've lived in Brum and the Black Country. Not one person seems at all bothered about these six scandals I have uncovered, let alone the 40, below!
Apathy, acquiescence and the always very small turnout at local elections proves my point. Are you interested, Richard? What are your comments over my emails? Tell me where I am going wrong, please, sir! You made some disparaging remarks about my emails this evening. Certainly, an unkind, unnecessary aside, I thought. Please be more specific, my friend and help me write better emails instead of slagging me off, in front of others too and, never replying (apart from once when I sent you something and you replied, "Thank you").
Oppose me with evidence and explanation, please!
I honestly think there is no difference in the local authorities/CA between Tory and Labour. No difference between the elected members and the officers. Democracy and elections are a complete waste of time because the politicians are simply rubber stamps, confirming whatever the senior officers want. Committees are talking shops. In all my years of attending, I can't remember a single vote being taken, apart possibly, from Planning committees and then they all obey their whips. Please don't ask for more elections to the CA. The Mayor is also powerless and has to work with his seven council leaders and chief execs.
The existing councillors need much political and every other kind of education, I think. Don't let us have any more, I beg you and certainly no more MPs.
It is vital that more people in WMCC turn up at public invited committee/Board meetings to speak, informally to both officers and members, before and after meetings. All of us can learn so much in hearing another point of view. IT REALLY IS WORTHWHILE and great conversations can be had, for the benefit of all. Honest!!
For the record, it was Labour who won the Tories over to Metro trams in 1981, in the days of the ELECTED county councillors and elected Cllr Phil Bateman. But, if I remember correctly, he won them over after committee discussion but with no votes in full council in even one of the seven councils! This was very different from Edinburgh City Council where the Conservatives vigorously opposed both of their highly expensive tram projects on grounds of cost and knowing the money could be more wisely spent on much more important priorities (SELF: like retrofitting and the poor first).
Ever since 1981, every single properly and fairly elected councillor was in favour of trams taking over our two important railway lines and some bus services. Not one councillor has ever challenged the full-time, professional officers over the wisdom of continuing with the second most expensive transport mode to construct after High Scam 2. And more on why High Scam 2 here:
Extravagant, very foolish, incompetent spending by the officers and members has worsened the climate emergency and put the CA in financial difficulties ever since last summer. Projects, since then, remain seriously delayed and some suspended. All those £100s millions could have gone to insulate and solar power the homes of the poorest in our region. And for the apartments built on the 23,000 sq metres at High Plateau at Merry Hill, as well.
PS bonus of 3 photos, 2 cartoons and some tongue in cheek writing:
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