Wednesday, 28 December 2011

News From Gillingham South's Councillors

Councillor Juby, Leader of the Libdem group
Well, another batch of Focus' for me to deliver in the new year arrived last week and here is a review of what Councillors Geoff Juby and Shelia Kearney have done for you... the lucky people of Gillingham South!

Well lets get the more mundane, less interesting but necessary stuff done first!
Road re-surfacing in Canterbury Street, Balmoral Road and Duncan Road all of which needed serious attention. Rubbish clearance from Lock Street and Canterbury street and an alley way cleared between Balmoral Road and Franklin Road.

A Salt bin has been approved and placed by us at Windmill Road's junction with Canterbury Street after resident's complained that last year Medway Council didn't salt some roads and paths.
Two benches have been provided in Rookery fields Park from the Ward improvement funds. Sadly I must report that I've noticed they've been heavily graffittied by the School Kids who've gone past in the past few weeks but a bench is a bench still!

The Bridge as it was

I can also report a success story too. After 13 years of campaigning the Railway bridge outside Gillingham Station's footpath has been widened! Before the Station's refit the path could fit two people abreast which was problematic for wheel chair users, buggies and prams or at the traffic lights if there were a lot of people waiting to cross.

Now, with a bit of road re-direction and change it is now around four people across and is much easier for the people of Gillingham who are trying to get into the town.

As for Parking, which is another on going problem in Gillingham and in fact most of Medway.
Medway Council are only going to do reviews if they can be funded externally due to the budget cuts due to the Budget cuts and lack of money and, sadly, none of the developments being undertaken in Gillingham currently warrant a Section 106 which would mean they have to pay for the review.
Geoff and Shelia have pushed that the parking fine revenue earned should be used to pay for a review. Why not cure the problem with the benefits?

The Conservatives have refused.

Another interesting thing is the "Better for Less" streamlining of the telephone services to the Council. The aim was to cut down the number of operators and lines for residents to call however Geoff and Shelia have said that there have been many complaints from residents saying that they have found it very difficult to get through to the person or department they need and that problems are taking weeks rather than hours to solve. Is this another policy rushed through with out proper thought and implementation by the council?
The promise was that Customer's would come first still but it looks like a rocky start!

If YOU have had trouble getting through and are a resident of Gillingham South, please contact Geoff or Shelia and they will continue to up the pressure to make sure the system will work.

Finally, and I will be writing about this properly in the New year, the proposed merger of Medway Maritime and Darent Valley Hospital Dartford. As I've said in the past we as a group are worried about the merger, especially for the secrecy that seems to have overtaken the proceedings. The Consultation meetings are pretty much being held behind closed doors unless you are a member of LINK(?)
The big concerns are the sharing of certain services. Front line services are being kept at each hospital but specialist things are being shared out but Darent is dificult to get to by Public transport, (in fact it is easier to get to London hospitals!) especially as Medway Maritime covers the Isle of Sheppey also which is a fair old stretch to Darent!

Well, that's the news so far from Gillingham South. If you are a resident or have met with the issues I've mentioned feel free to email me or Geoff and Shelia on the above links or you can attend one of the Ward Surgeries held on the Second Monday of the month at St Mark's Church or the Third Saturday at Salem Church, Nelson road (opposite the Bus depot).

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