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Tiverton and Honiton Liberal Democrats


March 3, 2016 10:31 AM
Originally published by Central Devon Liberal Democrats

The Tory U-turn which has saved Devon's school 'lollipop' crossing patrols has been welcomed by the county's Liberal Democrats who campaigned vigorously against the cuts.

And they are asking questions about how the ruling Conservatives, who forced through the unpopular measure, will pay to keep the crossing patrols when just 13 days ago they argued there was no money to fund the service.

"We are delighted that the Conservatives have, at last, seen sense and listened to mums and dads and the opposition groups at County Hall. We said all along this was a cut too far and should never have been put forward," said Councillor Alan Connett, Liberal Democrat group leader at County Hall.

"We said the council's advertising and media spin budgets, running at close to £2 million a year, should have been cut to pay for the school crossing patrols. However, Conservative Leader John Hart wasn't prepared to listen to alternative ideas. Instead, he and his Conservative councillors ignored all the advice and voted to cut the crossing patrols and hand the burden over to local schools.

Thank goodness they've seen sense at last - but they remain tight-lipped about how they are going to pay for the service having cut the funds from the council's budget.

Lib Dems are insisting that the Conservatives need to come clean and say where this money is coming from, because if it can be found now, 13 days after the budget.

"Why on earth didn't they find it before and avoid all the upset they have caused families and the crossing patrols staff," added Cllr Connett who is now writing to Conservative Leader Cllr John Hart and the county council's chief executive, Phil Norrey, asking for an explanation of the school crossing cuts debacle and the detail of how the service will now be paid for.

Cllr Connett is the county councillor for the Exminster and Kenton Division and is Shadow Leader of Devon County Council.