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Latest planning applications for the Westfield Ward

Below is the latest planning applications received by the York Council for the Westfield ward.

Full details can be found by clicking the application reference

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38 Marston Crescent York YO26 5DQ

Two storey side and single storey rear extensions

Ref. No: 17/02641/FUL 

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Representations can be made in favour of, or in objection to, any application via the Planning on line web site.  http://planningaccess.york.gov.uk/online-applications/

The Council now no longer routinely consults neighbours by letter when an application is received

Final garden waste collections of 2017

The York Council is urging residents to make the most of the final round of garden waste collections, which start on Monday (20 November).

The next fortnight is the final chance for the 67,000 homes to fill their green bins with autumn leaves, cuttings and windfall fruit, with the service restarting on Easter Monday (April 2)

Anyone who misses that last collection can still take their waste to York’s two household waste recycling centres, which remain open every day except Christmas, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day.

New rubbish and recycling calendars have been delivered to every household in the city over the last two months. City centre properties with St Nick’s recycling collections will receive their calendars by the end of November.

The calendars also contain details of this year’s Christmas collection arrangements – there are no waste collections on the week of Christmas Day, but every household will get an extra rubbish collection either the week before or after Christmas.

If you’ve miss-placed your calendar, you can:

Neil Ferris, corporate director for economy and place, said: “This is a great opportunity to get the garden tidied in the run-up to Christmas. The Green Bins are very popular, making a big contribution to the 40,000 tonnes of waste we saved from going to landfill last year. I’d also like to remind people to that collection times are not the same every week, so please make sure that bins are out by 7am on your collection day.”

What goes in your garden waste:

Yes please

Leaves and bark
Grass cuttings and hedge clippings
Cut flowers and house plants
Garden plants and flowers
Windfall fruit
Twigs and small branches
Non invasive garden weeds
Pot plant compost
Straw bedding from small vegetarian pets, such as rabbits
Christmas trees and wreaths must be inside the bin, so please chop them up

No thanks

Soil and rubble, coal, BBQ charcoal
Nappies
Plastic, paper, cardboard and other packaging
General household rubbish
Food or other kitchen waste
Large whole branches
Invasive weeds such as Japanese knotweed, Giant Hogweed and Ragwort (seek advice on safe disposal from the Environment Agency)
Plant pots
Pet and animal waste from cats and dogs

Community Stadium Contracts signed

The York Council has announced today that the design, build, maintain and manage contract for York’s Community Stadium has finally been signed.

The announcement comes after another hitch delayed the contract completion from the promised October deadline.

The news marks a major milestone in the Community Stadium project and means that Greenwich Leisure Ltd will now formally take possession of the Monks Cross site and “diggers will be on site before Christmas”. In preparation for full construction works, site security and compounds will arrive on site within the next few weeks.

Greenwich Leisure Ltd will also take over the operation of Energise Leisure Centre and Yearsley Swimming Pool, as part of the wider new stadium and leisure contract, from 1 December 2017.

This news comes after last month, it was announced that Greenwich Leisure Ltd had appointed Buckingham Group Contracting Ltd as the new building contractor.

Once complete the new Community Stadium Leisure Complex will comprise of an 8,000 all-seat community sports stadium to host professional football and rugby league games. There will also be new leisure facilities incorporating a swimming pool, gym, dance studio, indoor and outdoor climbing facilities and a sports hall with spectator seating.

A commercial development on the stadium site will also feature a cinema complex, including an IMAX screen, five restaurants and up to three retail units. NHS outpatient services will be offered on site from a community hub and there will be a new Explore library and a York Against Cancer retail unit.

The new stadium, leisure facilities and the community hub will all open in 2019 along with the new cinema and commercial units.

The Community Stadium has had a chequed career since the Council, agreed to make land available for the project in 2010. Funding for the stadium was agreed then as part of a section 106 agreement with the developers of the adjacent Vanguard site.

Everything was on schedule for a 2014 opening when planning permission was granted in 2012 but the then Council opted for a much bigger project including the management of other leisure buildings in the city together with a new swimming pool and as substantial amount of commercial space.

That contract was held up by procurement regulations and at one point it seemed that the complex project would collapse.

Cost forecast 2014

The Council has however persisted with the plans but the bill for the scheme is now way above the initial estimates of £14 million (which would have been covered by the section 106 agreement funding)

.The following statement has been issued by the Councils Liberal Democrat Group  Continue reading

LibDem Councillor highlights concerns about anti social behaviour in west York

Cllr Ashley Mason continued to closely scrutinise the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) at yesterdays North Yorkshire Police & Crime Panel.

 

The PCC agreed with Cllr Mason that work was needed to review neighbourhood policing in York, following public concerns. 

Because of these concerns, a public meeting for residents and community leaders has been organised to raise issues with the Deputy Chief Constable on the 19th December, at West Offices, York (see below).

We have seen a more effective police presence in west York over the last few weeks. Offices attended Wednesdays Foxwood Residents Association meeting to provide an update following incidents of vandalism in the area.

The neighbourhood policing team (left) have also been using social media to update residents (left) on the progress they  are making.

Thursday’s Police and Crime Panel saw welcomed engagement with younger residents, as students from York College’s Public Services course attended to put questions to the panel.  Cllr Mason, who originally suggested to the panel to hold the meeting at York College, was pleased to see young people participating.

Cllr Mason pressed the Commissioner regarding Freedom of Information (FOI) practice at the OPCC and North Yorkshire Police, and additionally, requested an update on the progress of the 101 service.

Given recent negative coverage regarding the Force’s handling of FOI requests and reports of callers suffering delays to speak to operators via the101 service, Cllr Mason felt it fundamental that Julia Mulligan update the public.

Cllr Ashley Mason said:

“We must continue to scrutinise the OPCC and ensure vital police services are maintained to an excellent standard.  Recent reports have suggested that this has not been the case and therefore, the OPCC must be upfront and relay this information back to the public they serve.  Services such 101 are hugely important to the local community and I will continue to push for better standards.

I was also delighted to see students from York College at Thursday’s Panel, having originally requested that the Panel increase its engagement with younger residents.  It is so important that young people are heard at the local level and I will continue to amplify their voice where possible in all areas of my council duties.”

Residents can attend the public meeting on the 19th December at 6pm. There is no need to pre-book, simply attend West Offices. For further details, please contact Cllr Mason on cllr.amason@york.gov.uk

Quit smoking medication available in York

Alternative medication to be made available for those quitting smoking

Additional support is set to be made available to residents who are trying to drop the habit and quit smoking.

Cllr Carol Runciman, Liberal Democrat Executive Member for Adult Social Care and Health, has given the go ahead for Varenicline (Champix) to be included as part of a new pharmacotherapy support package to users of our Yorwellbeing service.

Currently, Varenicline is only available through a private prescription from your GP or via an online pharmacy.

However, with the expansion of the current service offer, any individual who would like to stop smoking can be assessed for eligibility to the hardship fund and if they qualify for either Nicotine Replacement Therapy or Varenicline, they will be provided with an initial 2 weeks supply, followed by another 2 weeks if required.  Research suggests that if an individual can quit smoking for 4 weeks, their chances of dropping the habit for good are increased five fold.
Continue reading

Police commissioner spends over £141,000 on fire service takeover bid

Costs have been revealed concerning the Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) bid to take over responsibilities for overseeing the Fire Service in North Yorkshire.

It has been revealed that Julia Mulligan has spent £141,437.50 on consultants in order to put her business case together, exceeding her budget by over £12,000 in the process.  The revelations come after Councillors on the Police and Crime Panel were issued with a last minute briefing paper from the PCCs office.

Cllr Ashley Mason, Vice Chair of the Panel and Liberal Democrat Councillor for Dringhouses and Woodthorpe, initially queried the costs earlier in the year, but was informed the details were commercially sensitive.

Cllr Ashley Mason said:

“I was astonished to learn how much the PCC had spent on this takeover bid. I was even more surprised to see that these costs are solely for the external consultants and marketers. The costs do not include the large amount of staff time her office put into the campaign and only £88,000 can be claimed back from the Home Office.

This is totally unacceptable and the money would have been better spent in employing more control room staff to address the failings in 101 services, or on local PCSOs, with numbers reducing in York.

The Commissioner has some serious issues to tackle within the police, who have recently fallen in their rating by the Inspectorate of Constabularies’ from ‘Good’ to ‘Requires Improvement.”

 

 

 

Local Plan – Tory Minister criticises Tory delays in submitting plan

Tories have been mired in Local Plan controversy

A government Minister is threatening to take over the preparation of the Local Plan for York.

Good luck with that then.

Millions of pounds have already been spent on  research projects and consultation. The last thing a northern City needs is the dead hand of London government interfering at the last minute.

York had a perfectly good draft Local Plan ready to submit for final approval in February 2011. Then a new administration was elected and new Council Leader James Alexander unveiled his “Big City” proposal which would have seen York increase in size by 25%.

Large areas of Green Belt land would have been developed

Few wanted that, so, not surprisingly, 4 years later his high growth based Local Plan was ditched before it even made it to a public enquiry.

Residents protest against Labour’s Local Plan in 2013

The latest plan – which still has elements of controversy – was almost ready when central government announced that it was closing two barracks in the York area. That potentially released a large amount of additional building land into the pool. The Council could not ignore that change and has spent 12 months agonising about how to react to the news.

Tory housing numbers plan 2015 election manifesto

If they had ignored the change, then objectors would have rubbished the plan for being incomplete.

Yes maybe the Council  should have moved along a little quicker but final consultation on the latest plan ended on 31st October so there is nothing to stop an “Examination in Public” now being scheduled.

Far from speeding up the process, it is more than likely that any intervention by central government will result in further delays.

The Council has now said that it will follow this timetable

Timetable for delivery:

Sep / Oct 2017             Consultation over pre-publication draft of Local Plan

Jan 2018                      Publish results of Local Plan, which go to the Local Plan Working Group and the council’s Executive

Feb-March 2018          Consultation on final version of the Local Plan

May 2018                     Submission to Secretary of State

York Liberal Democrats have responded to Minister’s Local Plan statement

Today, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government announced that he will be starting the formal intervention process in our Local Plan.

The Liberal Democrats do not share the same views expressed by the Secretary of State; that York has ‘failed to cooperate’ on its duty to provide local development schemes. 

In reality, we have been working tirelessly over the last few years to create a Local Plan that is right for the City of York, a plan that provides the homes and opportunities we need to grow our city, whilst protecting its unique heritage. 

Unfortunately, as we approached the final stages of setting our Local Plan, the Ministry of Justice announced the closure of three barracks in the City.  As a result, we re-consulted on the Local Plan and set back the process by 6 months, in order to absolutely ensure the people of York had the opportunity to have their say.

It is essential to the future development of York that our Local Plan is determined by local people, not forced upon us by central government.  The Conservatives and the Cities MPs should stand up for York and not allow Government to dictate the future of our City.  The Liberal Democrats will continue to oppose outside interference and deliver a local plan for the City.