Letter: Sale of council site is a failure

I refer to your article about Ryedale's intentions to move out of Ryedale House and sell the council office site.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 5th April 2018, 9:57 am
Updated Thursday, 5th April 2018, 10:01 am
Sale of site is a confession of failure.
Sale of site is a confession of failure.

This is a confession of failure by a council which has neglected all due maintenance of its offices; failed to raise its council tax over seven consecutive years to keep pace with inflation; out-sourced many of its services so as to leave it without the critical staffing levels necessary to keep if functioning without reductions in the delivery of its remaining services; delegated most decisions to officers so as to be unaccountable to members and pursued the supermarket saga without any regard to planning justification or the law.

In order to remedy these failings, the council will put its office site on the market so as to raise cash without regard to the impact on local residents. Ryedale’s office site could no doubt be included in a much larger development area if the police decide to move from Quarry Bank and Malton Police Station.

Malton already has seen a massive recent expansion of its housing sites.

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This was justified on the basis of consultants’ reports which are as badly flawed as the ones the council used to justify the supermarket saga: and now residents are suffering the consequences.

These range from traffic congestion to unlawful levels of air pollution. Why? Because the cash the council hasn’t raised through inflationary increases in the council tax can be obtained from the government as “New Homes Bonus” for building lots of new houses, and the bigger the town, the more houses can be built there and the greater the grant of government cash.

This is in addition to the actual sale proceeds of the site.

This situation is outrageous. Will nobody hold the council to account?

Cllr Paul Andrew

Malton Ward

The Beeches

Great Habton