GREEN BIN TAX TO BE CANNED
PLANS FOR NEW HOMES ALSO TARGETED AFTER COUNCIL DEAL IN TRAFFORD
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