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Burntwood councillor hails ‘political u-turn’ on recycling centre

The decision to keep Burntwood’s recycling centre open has been described as a “political u-turn” by a local councillor.

It was confirmed yesterday (October 12) that the planned closure of the site would not go ahead after a review by county councillor Robert Marshall.

Cllr Steve Norman

Cllr Steve Norman

However, Lichfield District Councillor Steve Norman (Lab, Summerfield) has said the decision was more about decision makers buckling under public pressure.

He said:

“The news that the Conservatives have backed down on this is great for Burntwood. It is indeed a political u-turn as no report on the review of all the centres has been presented to elected members as required by Cabinet on July 21.  Clearly they couldn’t stand the pressure and couldn’t even wait for the debate at full council due on Thursday.

“The site was closed by press release and has now been saved by press release.  This is no way to run a democratic organisation and clearly shows that people can save frontline services in Staffordshire if they are willing to act.  This is an important lesson to learn when the real cuts start later in the year.”

Despite the victory Cllr Norman has warned that it may not be the last local residents hear of the issue.

Cllr Marshall stated that a wider report was being drawn up on the long-term financial viability of all waste sites across the county. However he added that he was not simply delaying the inevitable. He said:

“People should not view this as a coded message that we intend to close services further down the line. This is a straight message that we intend to protect services which are valued by the taxpayer, but must look at making them financially sustainable in the long-term.”

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5 Comments

  1. Steve

    12th October, 2010 at 10:38 am

    Although I support the tory cuts, I think this is great news for Burntwood. We don’t have to drive to either Cannock or Lichfield to dispose of our rubbish.

  2. Freddy

    12th October, 2010 at 1:14 pm

    Nice one Steve, we’re all in it together eh?

  3. 66usual

    12th October, 2010 at 8:48 pm

    Well done Cllr Norman. You opposed this from the start, and kept the pressure up all along. Good work!

  4. Steven Norman

    13th October, 2010 at 3:30 pm

    I woudn’t support the Tory cuts, Steve, until we know what they are – which won’t be until December.
    We should be in it together Freddy but clearly we aren’t I found out last night at the LDC meeting that the District Council wasn’t told about the decision!
    And thanks 66usual for the comment – it’s a shame Mr Fabricant couldn’t have helped us.

  5. Eric N Drinkwater

    15th October, 2010 at 11:23 am

    Since readfing the announcement in the press on Monday11th October that the site was to remain open I have asked a series of questions. The main question being that if the decision has been made whyb is the issue still on the agenda for the County Council meeting on 14th October. The answer of course is that a petition of 5000 signatures or more has to be discussed. However I asked myself the question, what on earth are they going to debate if the decision is already announced and I wondered if it was worth me attending to observe. I did attend and need not have worried because I was treated to a pre Christmas Pantomine of No Debate but the Tories ably supported by the Fib Dems giving a back slapping display of self congratulation on what appears on the surface to be a massive U Turn but the reality is that the Promised Review is still to take place and isn`t it strange that we have local elections in May. It dosn`t take much working out does it?