GREEN BIN TAX TO BE CANNED

PLANS FOR NEW HOMES ALSO TAR­GETED AF­TER COUN­CIL DEAL IN TRAF­FORD

Manchester Evening News - - FRONT PAGE - By LISA MEAKIN

TRAF­FORD’S green bin tax could be scrapped and a ques­tion mark placed over plans for thou­sands of new homes on Tim­per­ley Wedge af­ter the coun­cil’s Labour and Lib­eral Demo­crat groups struck a deal.

The two par­ties have to­day an­nounced the terms of their al­liance, a con­fi­dence-and-sup­ply ar­range­ment thrashed out af­ter the town hall tipped into no over­all con­trol nearly a fort­night ago.

Their 10-point deal in­cludes the removal of Traf­ford’s con­tro­ver­sial green bin charge ‘as soon as fund­ing be­comes avail­able.’

It de­scribes the move as a ‘key as­pi­ra­tion,’ but that the Lib Dems will ‘con­tinue to push’ for it to be scrapped in next year’s budget. Labour bosses have not cat­e­gor­i­cally promised that will hap­pen, how­ever.

The agree­ment also says plans to build 3,000 homes on Tim­per­ley Wedge will be scrapped ‘should any ad­di­tional brown­field sites be­come avail­able.’

Again the Lib Dems will con­tinue to op­pose the pro­pos­als, con­tained in the draft ver­sion of the Greater Manch­ester Spa­tial Frame­work, while the coun­cil’s chief ex­ec­u­tive Theresa Grant will be ‘in­structed to carry out a fea­si­bil­ity study’ into build­ing on brown­field sites in Traf­ford Park in­stead. The two par­ties will pur­sue a ‘brown­field first’ ap­proach to de­vel­op­ment. More af­ford­able hous­ing is also promised in the deal.

A new high­ways in­vest­ment pro­gramme will be un­veiled in a year’s time in or­der to ‘sort out the pot­hole prob­lem once and for all. The agree­ment does not de­tail how much that will cost or how it will be funded.

The deal also prom­ises the Labour-led ad­min­is­tra­tion will draw up ‘a plan to ad­dress the prob­lems within the Amey con­tract for the ben­e­fit of the res­i­dents of Traf­ford,’ a ref­er­ence to the au­thor­ity’s trou­bled out-sourced en­vi­ron­men­tal ser­vices depart­ment.

It prom­ises im­proved youth ser­vices – pro­vided in-house – while ‘play­ground equip­ment that has been promised will be in­stalled and the on­go­ing park main­te­nance pro­gramme will be de­liv­ered as promised.’

The ad­min­is­tra­tion also prom­ises to ask of­fi­cers for a re­view into park­ing prob­lems in Tim­per­ley Vil­lage.

Although the deal does not re­fer to the con­tro­ver­sial plans to re­de­velop Turn Moss, Labour have promised pre­vi­ously to scrap the pro­pos­als, orig­i­nally drawn up by the pre­vi­ous Con­ser­va­tive ad­min­is­tra­tion.

To­day’s deal means Labour’s An­drew Western will take lead­er­ship of the au­thor­ity, af­ter end­ing 14 years of Tory rule on May 3 but fail­ing to se­cure a ma­jor­ity.

Coun Western said: “I can con­firm that the Labour and Lib­eral Democrats have signed a for­mal con­fi­dence and sup­ply ar­range­ment for the next coun­cil year.

“I am delighted that we have come to this agree­ment. It will pro­vide much needed sta­bil­ity in the com­ing months as we look to take Traf­ford for­ward un­der a pro­gres­sive Labour ad­min­is­tra­tion.”

Coun Western said he was com­mit­ted to work­ing closely with Lib Dem Coun Ray­mond Bowker and Jane Bro­phy, who he said bring ‘huge ex­pe­ri­ence with them.’

He added: “Our shared val­ues of de­fend­ing ser­vices for chil­dren and young peo­ple, pro­tect­ing our en­vi­ron­ment, and work­ing in a more open and en­gag­ing way with res­i­dents are the foun­da­tion of a part­ner­ship that I be­lieve will en­able us to make real and last­ing change.

“This deal will al­low my Labour col­leagues to be­gin im­ple­ment­ing our 100 point man­i­festo in full and I am ex­cited to get on with the work ahead.”

Labour and the Lib Dems in Traf­ford have agreed to make scrap­ping the green bin charge ‘a key as­pi­ra­tion’

Traf­ford coun­cil leader An­drew Western

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