Councillors should be held to account

WHAT’S HAPPENING in Eastfield? I have been asking this question along with a number of my neighbours and have found out the following information. Scarborough Borough Council officers work for and on behalf of elected councillors, not the electorate.

Councillors should be answerable to residents, but are not.

If a resident has a complaint against a councillor or council, they are referred to the Monitoring Officer of the Standards Committee, who confirmed that I will need to stand for election on May 5 2011 to obtain the full support of officers. This advice has been given to me by a number of sources, including Eastfield Councillors and other employees of the council.

Eastfield is in a very precarious position now.

From April 2011, Eastfield Parish Councillors will run Eastfield independent of the borough council. Residents will not have a say in what they do or how they spend our Council taxes, in particular, the Parish precept. I have come under attack by Eastfield councillors and private organisations that they fund because I have exposed these facts to fellow residents and am now the victim of hate mail.

At the last Eastfield Voice meeting, the only opposition to what residents want to do in Eastfield by facilitating a Big Lunch event on the Dell came from councillors and a personal friend of theirs.

However, before leaving the meeting, the chairman of the parish council (also a borough and county councillor), said he would take things further regarding the Big Lunch.

Why can they not include residents and inform us and work together with us, instead of residents having to wait for them to deliver projects to us? Why will they not engage widely with residents who are willing to work with them and other organisations to ensure a better community spirit for Eastfield?

Residents need to be informed and able to take part in activities and decisions in Eastfield as much as directors of private limited companies supported and funded by Scarborough Borough Council and Eastfield Parish Council.

Consider putting yourselves forward for a Parish Council position. If you would like further information about this, please do not hesitate to contact me or Sue Bedford at the council on 232323.

The last election to Eastfield Parish Council was 1999. Members of the Parish Council are not elected democratically, they are usually co-opted.

Does Eastfield Parish Council not want residents who are active in the community to be part of delivering what residents want? We need councillors who are able to work for the community, not just receive their allowances for all the various committees they attend.

Carole Gerada

Chair of Eastfield Voice