Your Councillors


Agenda item

Question and Answer Session for Members of the Public

Minutes:

Questions to the Leader of the Council

 

Mr Fergus Wilson asked the following question of the Leader of the Council:

 

Should adverse reports about Maidstone Borough Council be reported to Members to be debated or should they be buried?

 

The Leader of the Council responded to the question.

 

Councillor Mrs Wilson, the Leader of the Opposition, Councillor Mrs Gooch, the Leader of the Independent Group, Councillor Powell, the Leader of the UKIP Group, and Councillor McKay, the Leader of the Labour Group, then responded to the question.

 

Mr Wilson asked the following supplementary question of the Leader of the Council:

 

Is it the intention to report CHI/29UH/HIN/20124/0005 (24 Hedley Street) to Members?

 

The Leader of the Council responded to the question.

 

Councillor Mrs Wilson, the Leader of the Opposition, Councillor Mrs Gooch, the Leader of the Independent Group, Councillor Powell, the Leader of the UKIP Group, and Councillor McKay, the Leader of the Labour Group, then responded to the question.

 

Mr Elliot Dean asked the following question of the Leader of the Council:

 

The LocalPlan is a document which I have heard described as key, vital and "should have been done yesterday".  The Council’s failure to deliver this key document has left the local economy, employment and the environment (to name a few) in a disastrous state.  Can you explain why you have failed to deliver a LocalPlan?

 

The Leader of the Council responded to the question.

 

Councillor Mrs Wilson, the Leader of the Opposition, Councillor Mrs Gooch, the Leader of the Independent Group, Councillor Powell, the Leader of the UKIP Group, and Councillor Harper, on behalf of the Leader of the Labour Group, then responded to the question.

 

Mr Elliot asked the following supplementary question of the Leader of the Council:

 

Bearing in mind this Council must demonstrate best value at all times, can you explain why external mediators are being used to deliver the Local Plan?

 

The Leader of the Council responded to the question and provided a further response having clarified the issue raised.

 

Councillor Mrs Wilson, the Leader of the Opposition, Councillor Mrs Gooch, the Leader of the Independent Group, Councillor Powell, the Leader of the UKIP Group, and Councillor Harper, on behalf of the Leader of the Labour Group, responded to the question.

 

Mr Dave Witcher asked the following question of the Leader of the Council:

 

Anyone who is taken to court for an alleged debt would expect to receive an original court sealed and signed liability order from a magistrates court and NOT just a notification sent from the Council.

 

It goes without saying that this matter clearly affects an increasing number of people who are becoming aware that a transparent due process operating between the Council and the magistrates courts does not appear to exist; resembling an in-house system.

 

When one approaches the Council they are directed to the magistrates court for the liability order and vice versa, nor do the civil procedure rules seem to apply, yet the criminal procedure rules are applied in their place to obtain a un-court sealed summons by the Council when it is in fact a civil matter NOT criminal matter; the summons are also not sealed by the magistrates court.

 

Is the Council aware that Section (3) of The Council Tax Administration and Enforcement Act states the following 'The amount in respect of which a liability order is made is enforceable in accordance with this Part; and accordingly for the purposes of any of the provisions of Part III of the Magistrates' Courts Act 1980 (satisfaction and enforcement) it is NOT to be treated as a sum adjudged to be paid by order of the court.'

 

Does the Council have a transparency policy on Council Tax enforcement and do they follow due process to obtain and provide a properly constituted magistrates court sealed liability order for the people who the Council allege owe Council Tax and is this a sum adjudged to be by order of the magistrates court?

 

The Leader of the Council responded to the question.

 

Councillor Mrs Wilson, the Leader of the Opposition, Councillor Mrs Gooch, the Leader of the Independent Group, Councillor Powell, the Leader of the UKIP Group, and Councillor McKay, the Leader of the Labour Group, then responded to the question.

 

Question to the Cabinet Member for Planning, Transport and Development

 

Ms Geraldine Brown asked the following question of the Cabinet Member for Planning, Transport and Development:

 

Leaving to one side the development requirements for 963 new care home places, will the Borough’s current residents welcome another 18,600 homes, implying another 30,000 or so residents?

 

The Cabinet Member for Planning, Transport and Development responded to the question.

 

Councillor Harwood, on behalf of the Leader of the Opposition, Councillor Mrs Gooch, the Leader of the Independent Group, Councillor Powell, the Leader of the UKIP Group, and Councillor McKay, the Leader of the Labour Group, then responded to the question.

 

The time allowed within the Council’s Procedure Rules for questions by members of the public having expired, the Mayor announced that the remaining questions would be dealt with by written answers.

 

Note:  To listen to the responses to these questions, please follow this link:

 

http://live.webcasts.unique-media.tv/mbc243/interface