NOTE the huge public interest in the massive petition being presented at the city council meeting, tonight (Thursday). The petition calls for the council leader, John Gilbey, and his appointed executive to resign. The petitioners have been advised that the petition will only be given a maximum of 15 minutes debate, even though 3,300 people have seen fit to sign it. The papers have been told that a vote will be taken to see if councillors wish to extend this but I expect that this will be voted down by Conservatives leaving a ridiculous short period for a discussion and points to be made about such an important issue. This is indicative of the way business is done at the city council and clearly reflects the lack of democracy which is causing much alarm in the electorate. On December 31 the leader of the council reportedly stated ihere’s no whipping in the Conservative groups. This is not the case. The long-standing and hard-working Conservative member for Chestfleld fulfils that role. The only party that has a policy of allowing whip free voting is Ukip. As the opposition party at KCC the Ukip voting record clearly indicates just that. It a petition of this magnitude and importance is treated in this offhand manner then something must be done to restore democracy. No doubt that will be reflected in the local elections shortly.
Councillor David Hirst,
Greenhill and Eddington
Herne Bay Times, January 9th 2014