Cam­paign­ing proves thirsty work for one Con­ser­va­tive, at least

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Helping Others -

The elec­tion for Kent’s crime com­mis­sioner is a few months away but there is a dis­tinct feel­ing that the cam­paign is un­der way.

First, the Con­ser­va­tive polic­ing min­is­ter Mike Pen­ning re­jects the com­mis­sioner Ann Barnes’ bid for the govern­ment to bail out the force for the ex­tra costs of Op­er­a­tion Stack.

He hints heav­ily that per­haps the money should come from the po­lice re­serves of more than £30m.

Then, the Dover Con­ser­va­tive MP Charles El­ph­icke has a dig at the com­mis­sioner say­ing she had “se­ri­ous ques­tions” to an­swer about why the force al­lowed two marches to take place in Dover, al­though strictly speak­ing that is a force mat­ter.

Yes, tin hats on. There will be plenty more of this sort of thing to come.

ELEC­TION cam­paign­ing can be an en­ergy-sap­ping busi­ness and the fight for the South Thanet seat was par­tic­u­larly gru­elling as the Con­ser­va­tive

And you can’t say it doesn’t take the job se­ri­ously. It has reached an agree­ment with one debtor who owed the coun­cil £11,500.

The re­pay­ment scheme is for £10 a month.

That means it will get its money back in about, ooh, a mere 100 years.

KENT County Coun­cil has had its fin­gers burned over plans to sell off some of its coun­try parks and beat a hasty re­treat af­ter an en­tirely pre­dictable pub­lic out­cry.

The idea of “pri­vatis­ing” parks is about as con­tro­ver­sial as you can get in lo­cal govern­ment, next to clos­ing pub­lic toi­lets or li­braries.

Still, it is good to hear that they are hav­ing se­cond thoughts.

Or, as its web­site puts it, it wants to re­view its “Coun­try Park Of­fer” to en­sure re­sources are “fo­cused where they can make the big­gest im­pact for our res­i­dents”, Quite so.

FOL­LOW Paul on Twit­ter @PaulOnPol­i­tics for all the county’s political news and gos­sip.

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