Surrey Greens welcome Tory U-turn on tip closures

Green County Councillor Jonathan Essex has welcomed the decision by the Conservatives in Surrey to drop their plans to close four Community Recycling Centres (CRCs). The change of heart happened after huge opposition from thousands of Surrey residents.
 
The County Council will, however, proceed with its plans to reduce the opening hours of CRCs across the county, as well as to drop the daily free waste allowance for residents. The proposals will be confirmed at the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday 26 September.
 
Cllr Jonathan Essex said:
“It is good news that the four recycling centres will remain open but the Conservatives should also cancel their plans to increase charges and reduce the opening hours of CRCs across Surrey. These plans could affect Surrey’s ability to increase its recycling rate and meet its target of 70%. 
 
“Many residents replying to the consultation were concerned that the changes could increase fly-tipping. At the recent committee meeting, many councillors expressed concerns about fly-tipping and the County Council’s reporting of it, which many believe to be incomplete.
 
“I hope that the Conservative Cabinet’s plans “to make savings elsewhere” means that they intend to commit real resources to a proper plan to accelerate recycling rates. Greater segregation of waste and participation in recycling across Surrey, at CRCs and at the doorstep are vital, – for example many flats across Surrey still do not have the basic level of recycling collection offered to the rest of our residents.
 
“I call upon the Conservative Cabinet to think again, listen to the thousands of residents who have made their voices loud and clear, and drop these ill-thought-out proposals to increase charges and reduce CRC opening hours”.
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Green motion prompts County Council rethink on Recycling Centres

Surrey County Council will now explore alternatives to closing four Community Recycling Centres and reducing the opening hours of the others, thanks to a motion tabled by Green County Councillor Jonathan Essex at the Council meeting on 11 July.

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Local committee funding slashed as Surrey County Council faces £24m overspend

Redhill East Green County Councillor Jonathan Essex has today criticised Conservative-run Surrey County Council for making huge cuts to the Reigate & Banstead Local Committee budget, at the same time as the County Council announced a projected £24m overspend for the current financial year.

 

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Surrey Greens oppose Tory plans to cut recycling centres

Surrey County Council is consulting on proposed changes to Surrey’s community recycling centres. The Conservative-run Council says that its proposed option is to close the recycling centres in Dorking, Warlingham, Bagshot and Cranleigh, and to end the daily allowance of waste that can be disposed of for free.

The proposals include reducing opening hours at the recycling centre in Earlswood from 7 days a week to 5 days a week.

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Liquid and Envy site: a missed opportunity

The redevelopment of the Liquid & Envy site (or the former Odeon cinema) in Redhill for apartments was approved on 17 May, despite opposition from several councillors. Most agreed the need for action on what has been a derelict site but many expressed concern and disappointment at the design and the limited amount of affordable housing proposed, falling far short of the 30% threshold.

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County Council election results

We’re delighted to announce that we’ve kept our Redhill East seat on Surrey County Council. Jonathan Essex beat the Conservative candidate by almost 1,000 votes (1849 to 879), getting 53.41% of the vote.

But we didn’t manage the breakthrough we had worked for in Redhill West & Meadvale. Rob Jarrett came second with 22.25% of the vote – an increase on last time. Commiserations to Rob.

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Please vote Green on Thursday 4 May

This Thursday, you have a chance to vote for a councillor to represent you on Surrey County Council for the next four years.

Our Redhill candidates have been campaigning hard – to hold our seat in Redhill East, and to win in Redhill West and Meadvale, where we came second last time. Please vote for them!

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Surrey Wildlife Trust budget plan must be released

Greens called for Surrey County Council and Surrey Wildlife Trust to release the budget plan and vision for Surrey today.

This followed meetings at County Hall where concerned residents sought reassurances over the future of the Trust, its resources and the implications of Surrey County Council withdrawing its funding.

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Surrey Greens call for waste disposal charges to be dropped

Green county councillor Jonathan Essex has repeated his call for Surrey County Council to scrap its unpopular charges for disposal of waste at Community Recycling Centres.

This follows a meeting at County Hall where a petition signed by more than 7,000 people calling for the charges to be scrapped was discussed with the Cabinet Member for Environment and Highways.

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Statement on Surrey Conservatives’ ‘gentleman’s deal’ with the Government

David Hodge, leader of Surrey County Council, told Conservative colleagues that he had reached a “gentleman’s agreement” with senior cabinet ministers that persuaded him to cancel a threatened 15% council tax rise.

According to media reports, in a secret recording of a Conservative group meeting on 7 February, Hodge revealed there had been a “series of conversations” with the communities secretary, Sajid Javid, and a meeting with the chancellor, Philip Hammond.

He apparently said he had struck a deal with the government before scrapping the proposed 15% council tax hike.

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