CABINET CALL: By South Holland District Councillor Gary Taylor
I hope 2017 is starting well for you and your families.
Last year included many momentous events and it demonstrated how important our democratic institutions are.
Both nationally and locally, politicians need to listen to those who elected them.
As we enter this year, it’s a time to draw up plans and to make the most of the opportunities of working together to make our communities even stronger.
In December, councillor Elizabeth Sneath and I held two meet-your-councillor events, which were fully booked up and we are working through the issues brought to our attention.
We have listened to your concerns regarding the minority of people who engage in anti-social activity and have gathered the evidence, following a public consultation.
We have also introduced a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) in parts of Spalding, which has met with positive publicity.
Drinking in the street is not attractive and anti-social activities, such as spitting, are not acceptable.
This order leads to fines if a person fails to comply with a police officer’s request to stop drinking, spitting, dropping litter or urinating in a public place.
This can also be introduced in other areas following the same approach of gathering evidence.
My day-to-day work as a councillor and cabinet member for communities and assets has recently included inspecting the performance of areas such as CCTV, working on reports for decisions on assets, improvements being made to the Castle swimming pool and dealing with unfortunate issues, such as heaters breaking down at the Castle Sports Complex.
The communities team are working on a programme of events planned to take place this year across the district, including community garden projects in Sutton Bridge.
The team is heavily involved in planning for the popular open arts competition, as well as looking for further funding opportunities through the Heritage Lottery Fund.
Last year, the spotlight was on existing divisions which take time to repair. However, the start of a new year gives us a golden opportunity to focus on what we can achieve together, including our sports teams, Armed Forces personnel, businesses, the voluntary sector, councils, charities, schools and hospitals, which, together through the union of communities and families, makes our area somewhere to be truly proud of.