Tuesday, 10 February 2009

MBC Draft Core Strategy

Maidstone Borough Council are consulting on a draft Core Strategy (until 16th Feb). We have submitted a response. The draft strategy is is available on the MBC website. This is our press release that went out this morning:

Maidstone Greens have submitted their comments to Maidstone Borough Council on their Draft Core Strategy. Maidstone Borough Council is running a consultation "Have your say on the council's plans for the future" for just 18 days. Maidstone Greens have strongly criticised the council's lack of action on tackling the economic downturn, lack of action on climate change and lack of action on building strong communities.

Stuart Jeffery, Green Party prospective MP for Maidstone and the Weald: "The draft objectives that the Conservative run council have put together will be disastrous for the people of Maidstone. The council want to cut spending, but however they make these spending cuts, it will lead to job and service cuts both of which will have an appalling impact on both people and the economy in Maidstone, especially at this time.

"We have suggested that rather than reducing spending, the council raises money through issuing local government bonds and injects this money into schemes to create new green jobs. We want to see free home insulation provided across the borough, investment in public transport, walking and cycling, and investment in local renewable energy. All these schemes would stimulate the local economy, provide much needed jobs and start to tackle the environmental crisis.

"We want Maidstone to become more resilient to economic downturns. It can only do this by widening its range of businesses and by reducing its economic reliance on large scale retail.

"We have also called on the council to build communities and improve residents voice in local issues. One key way of doing this would be for the council to adopt the provisions in the Sustainable Communities Act.

"Maidstone Borough Council have allowed just 18 days for people to respond to the draft Core Strategy, for a strategy that defines the council's objectives for the next three years, we think this is far too short."

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