• It was the subject of hopelessly crippled council finances debated at this morning’s Joint Budget Scrutiny committee that was the subject of ire. The council has now prepared its budget for 2015/16 and it isn’t pretty.  £50 million pounds must be slashed in the next financial year alone, which comes on top of tens of millions of pounds of cuts in the last few years. Just about all [...]

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    Last summer DEFRA hinted that it may want to cull the beavers and then indicated that they may be sent to a zoo. It also suggested that the beavers may be carrying a disease (the chance of this was remote and even more remote that humans could catch it). National online campaigns got underway fast and tens of thousands of people signed to protect the animals. I sent countless emails to DEFRA and [...]

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    Ladbrokes now rate me at 10/1 - down from 12/1. Mr Swire’s odds have lengthened. The other parties odds remain static.

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    Here’s my manifesto - Here’s my manifesto - [...]

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    Thank you all so much for coming along this morning, it’s great to be here in sunny Exmouth. Lovely memories as a child playing on the beach and swimming year after year. I launch my manifesto pledges as we count down from 100 days to the General Election – so today is a significant date! I launched my parliamentary campaign seven months ago. I said then that I would spend six months [...]

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    Photograph:  Talking with Mark McGlade from Home Instead Senior Care.

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    But it still won’t be allowed to examine planning - the issue within the relationship that caused such controversy in 2012 and is still continuing to this day. East Devon Business Forum (now disbanded), with its large numbers of developer-landowner members, had a huge influence of the amount of employment land allocated in EDDC’s local plan.  And many of the members personally benefited [...]

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    I made a proposal that the planning application to redevelop EDDC’s offices at Sidmouth after reading a number of paragraphs in last night’s report, which stated that the office relocation project finances were “at significant risk” until the potential bidder had secured planning consent for its plans. This would be because the council would have already spent a large sum of money on its [...]

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    The views were expressed after I had asked for clarification on the basis for the emotive language used in the report on changing the set up for task and finish forums. The officer who was the author of the report said that she felt that members of the public watching the scrutiny function in those two task forums could have thought that the “credibility of the scrutiny function was [...]

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    It is proposed that the scope for TAFFs is discussed at the full overview and scrutiny committee meeting so that members do not use the forums to “pursue personal agendas.” Page 58 of today’s agenda states:“It is necessary for any TAFF member to understand the scope of the TAFF on which he/she sits and not to use it as a forum to hijack the the specific scope that has been [...]

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    I should declare an interest I am a member of the NT and have been for many years. Excellent organisation, demonstrates a deep commitment to environmentalism. Octavia Hill was truly ahead of her time and we owe her a debt of gratitude. Trees subject very close to my heart but not an expert on trees. I just love them and want to protect them. It is in this context that I am speaking because as a [...]

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    This is in effect, an official declaration of the company’s intention to lodge a planning application to quarry Straitgate. They have revealed that, at this stage, they are only able to dig out sand and gravel above the water table, which will only give them 1.2 million tonnes, which will only last four to five years. As this quantity is so diminished from their original plans, Aggregate [...]

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    A TOP NHS official has promised to reveal the financial reasoning behind controversial proposals to get rid of some community hospital beds and Minor Injuries Units (MIUs) across East Devon, and look into alternative options. Councillors, GPs and volunteers met to discuss, and challenge proposals first announced in September by the Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group [...]

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