Politicians must face the music if they let the public down!

The much anticipated Recall Bill is currently making its way through Parliament.

I strongly support voters having the power of recall over MPs who let them down.  MPs should face the music if they have abused their position or neglected their basic duties.  I am very pleased the Government has introduced legislation, particularly since the Lib Dem Manifesto in the run up to the last General Election outlined our intention to make sure MPs could be recalled by their voters for ‘serious misconduct’.

Last week, the Bill passed its Second Reading, and on Monday this week, it had its first day of debate in Committee.  I listened carefully to the discussion on both occasions.  At the end of the debate on Monday, I voted against one of forty nine separate amendments which had been suggested to improve the Bill.  There are many amendments still to be discussed, and I am sure many more will be put forward as the Bill is debated in the days to come.

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Tessa commemorates WW1 centenary at 'Wells Remembers' Exhibition

trench

Local MP Tessa Munt visited a unique exhibition marking the centenary of the First World War, hosted by the Wells & Mendip Museum.

The exhibition, part of the ‘Wells Remembers’ Centenary commemorations, includes a ‘walk through trench’ designed by locals Geoff Dickinson and Jeff Allen pictured.

This was built with the aid of a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund and a combination of efforts by many local organisations and individuals, all of whom pitched in to help get this four year rolling exhibition up and running.

Exhibits from a variety of local sources, including the City Archives, remind visitors of the need to ensure the great sacrifices made in the trenches during the bloody conflict are never forgotten.

 

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Chaos at County Hall

 I’m pleased that the Conservative leader of Somerset County Council has finally accepted it was not right to  pay such ludicrously large sums to his managers.

 Children and young people placed into care, through no fault of their own, have a right to be safe and secure.  Those of us who pay our taxes have a right to know that these children and young people are looked after in  ways that meet the highest standards of care.  The real problem in Somerset was, and remains, a lack of  frontline staff whose job it is to identify children and young people who are at risk.

 An emergency meeting has been scheduled for Wednesday this week to approve the Council’s new Human  Resources policy. Having read the documents, I’m staggered to find that the Conservative-controlled Council  has not made any of the changes necessary to stop the very practice that drew such enormous criticism from  Conservative Secretary of State for Local Government, Eric Pickles, who slammed the situation as:

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Liberal Democrats vote to end Revenge Evictions

Tenants would be better protected from rogue landlords and retaliatory evictions under plans passed by Liberal Democrat conference today.

Current rules mean that landlords can evict tenants with just two months’ notice and without having to give a reason. Rogue landlords often use this provision to evict tenants  rather than carrying out much-needed repairs, knowing that they will easily be able to find a new tenant because there is such a high demand for rented housing.

Over the last five years, an average of 324,000 households each year have been the victims of retaliatory evictions, and one in eight tenants admits they have not asked their landlords for repairs to be carried out for fear of retaliatory action.

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