Council Question Times at Scrutiny Committee
The Scrutiny Committee considers presentations by Cabinet members, asks questions and gives an opportunity to members of the public to ask questions. If you have a question, please email it in advance of the meeting to firstname.lastname@example.org or contact the Chair of the Committee, Councillor Sean Fitzsimons directly: email@example.com
3 November. 6.30pm. Culture, leisure & sport – question time
15 December. 6.30pm. The leader – question time
12 January. 6.30pm. Children, young people & learning – question time
19 January. 6.30pm. Economy & jobs – question time
2 February. 6.30pm. Green & clean – question time
22 March. 6.30pm. Communities, safety & justice – question time
26.9% of Croydon’s employee jobs are below the living wage
http://visual.ons.gov.uk/how-many-jobs-are-paid-less-than-the-living-wage-in-your-area. Cllr Jamie Audsley is right that ‘a big issue is how we pay local workers properly and transition away from poverty wages.’ The Living Wage event on 2 November provides an opportunity to discuss what can be done to improve the situation. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/learning-to-win-the-london-living-wage-in-croydon-tickets-18925253944
Campaigners fear Croydon will match Lambeth’s cut to Upper Norwood Library
Stanley Halls now run by social enterprise
Croydon Council has just completed the transfer of ownership of Stanley Halls, but two Cabinet members have taken over the Chair and Vice-Chairmanship of the committee.
Should Croydon Be Converting Council Services into social enterprises?
Commenting on the recent social enterprise event David White, Secretary of Croydon Central Labour Party, expresses concerns about hiving off Council services to social enterprises. http://insidecroydon.com/2015/10/11/back-door-privatisation-of-services-is-anti-social-behaviour
Our wonderful private businesses
Every day in the national press we read about the incompetences, inefficiencies and frauds undertaken inside a wide range of different sized private companies, including the banks and big Plcs. The distorting effect of the pursuit of profit for its own sake reaches deep down into small businesses across the country as well. Tackling abuses is part of the rationale of the new Croydon landlord licensing scheme. Now news comes that a Croydon based construction company cheated on paying tax. http://www.croydonadvertiser.co.uk/Croydon-construction-company-dodged-taxes-cheated/story-27953983-detail/story.html
Homelessness in Croydon
In response to a Freedom of Information request the Council has set out the statistics for homelessness over the last ten years, including those created by evictions of private tenants (AST).
The number of homeless referrals has risen from 1,081 in the year October 2015 – September 2006 to 1,822 in the year to September 2015. The number due to private tenant evictions has risen in the same period from 85 to 525. The totals across the ten years is 7,704 and 2,081. The percentage of private tenant evictions jumped to 17.1% in the year 2012-13, 25.3% 2013-14 and £28.8% in 2014-15. The last three years accounts for 59% of the total across the 10 years.
For full details table see https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/homeless_due_to_end_of_private_t_7?nocache=incoming-718064#incoming-718064
TfL Claims public supports second tram link
Having run a deeply flawed consultation exercise on its proposed second tram link TfL claims public supports the plan, despite only 379 people responding and with 24% of them were against.
Croydon Council faces making social housing cuts
Property world crows about securing Whitgift CPO
Meanwhile Hammerson has sold its Paris Bercy 2 complex.
Fairness Commission seeks views on its interim report
Croydon’s Opportunity and Fairness Commission has published its interim report and seeks views on its analysis and recommendations. It has been lambasted by Inside Croydon http://insidecroydon.com/2015/10/15/200000-60-pages-and-lacking-a-single-original-thought/#more-28383. There is no need to rush to a critique. It will need time to read and assess it. Inside Croydon is however right to point out that it expensive. It is 60 pages full of lovely pictures. It will therefore be very expensive for many people to print off. I have therefore asked the Commission to create a PDF version stripped of the pictures, people’s quotes and the case studies. This will help to ensure more people print it off and read it and make it easier for organisations to print copies for their members. The report can be seen and downloaded at https://jumpshare.com/v/TEIcJKgq2Pzx9ipgccxJ
Council Owned Trees
In response to a Freedom of Information request Croydon Borough Council has published details of all the trees it owns. https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/council_owned_trees_15?nocache=incoming-705543#incoming-705543
Do we need a religious revival?
Joint founder of the Croydon Technology City movement Jonny Rose is a regular contributor on local affairs in Croydon Citizen, the latest advocating a religious revival. See the comments on it by Liz Shephard-Jones and myself.