Sunday, 21 January 2018

MBIs deliver Council Tax Freeze

Morley Town Council supports Morley Town Centre
Morley Town Council voted at its meeting last Wednesday to freeze the council tax precept delivering a nil increase on the amount Morley residents will pay to the Council for 2018.

Cllr Bob Gettings said “For the third year running we have frozen the Council Tax Morley residents pay to the Town Council. We appreciate that Council Tax payers have had significant increases in the Council Tax they have had to pay Leeds City Council and we believe a Council Tax freeze was the fairest way forward.”

The precept Morley residents pay supports additional services across the area including increased levels of Policing, additional gritting of roads, additional highways safety measures – such speed indication devices, support for Morley Town Centre as well as financial support for local community groups and increased enforcement services.

Cllr Robert Finnigan said “Although we have frozen the precept again, Morley residents are still getting additional services that Leeds City Council won’t provide. The precept amounts to less than 20p a week for a band D property and for that residents get more Police on local streets, more vigorous enforcement of issues such as anti-social parking and dog fouling, safer roads and more financial support for community groups.”


Sunday, 14 January 2018

MBIs backing Fairtrade Campaign

Backing Fairtrade Tea and Coffee Producers
Morley Borough Independent Councillors are backing the campaign to bring Fairtrade Status to Morley and to make Morley a nationally recognised Fairtrade Town.

We have joined the working group who are developing a plan to meet the criteria for the award which includes traders, schools and local businesses recognising the Fairtrade movement and supporting it with their purchases and with what they serve in their shops and cafes.

As the present Mayor of Morley I am pleased the Town Council serves Fairtrade tea and coffee and has given a £500 grant to support the campaign. I also know many MBI councillors also make personal choices to financially support the Fairtrade movement.

The Fairtrade Movement has developed over many decades to give producers - often from developing countries - a fair deal for their produce. This sometimes includes paying a Fairtrade premium which goes to the producers in the country of origin who use the additional premium to improve health and educational opportunities for their families.

We are delighted to support the Fairtrade movement and will continue to work with others to promote the fine work the Fairtrade movement undertake.

Sunday, 17 December 2017

Topcliffe Lane Parking Plan

Morley Town Councillors have welcomed the publishing of a traffic regulation order that begins a legal process to bring a new highways plan to Topcliffe Lane in Morley. The plan, which follows a long period of consultation with residents in the area, will now go out to formal consultation which is likely to lead to its implementation early in the New Year.

Cllr Judith Elliott said “Publication of the traffic regulation order – which is the start of the legal process to bring this plan to reality – is most welcome. This means that, barring legitimate legal challenges, the new proposal will be implemented in the New Year.”

The plan includes residents parking permit schemes on some of the cul-de-sacs along with limited waiting times for parking outside residents home and an extension of yellow lining preventing parking at any time.

Cllr Robert Finnigan said “Residents have raised their concerns for many years about parking problems on Topcliffe Lane. Residents report being abused by motorists parking cars on Topcliffe Lane who work on the adjacent industrial estate. The parking on Topcliffe Lane has been so severe on some occasions that buses and emergency vehicles could not move up and down the road. This plan will address most of these anti-social parking issues.”

The new plan should be implemented early in the New Year and a review will be undertaken 6 months after implementation to see if additional measures are required.

Sunday, 10 December 2017

SIDS working

Morley Town Council financed SIDS (speed indication devices) are working well according to feedback from local residents. The devices, in place on Glen Road, Scotchman Lane and Glen Road, indicate the speed motorists are travelling at and are proven to slow down drivers.

Cllr Jim Aveyard, Chairman of the Town Councils Highway Committee said “We have financed SIDs across Morley and we were keen to get residents views on what impact the devices had had in their communities. The feedback from residents was generally positive with many believing it had slowed traffic down. Other residents believe more work needs to be done to slow traffic down. We have taken this on board and will explore further options.”

Other residents on Scatcherd Lane and Scotchman Lane have also welcomed the introduction of the devices.

Cllr Robert Finnigan said “The devices do two things. They give instant feedback to drivers and this often leads to a reduction is the speed they are travelling at. The devices also monitor on, a long term basis, the speed of motorists and this data can be used it evidence the need for further action – such as permanent safety cameras.”

Morley Town Council are looking to roll out the SID programme to other locations including Magpie Lane, Westwoodside in Churwell and Rein Road.

Friday, 1 December 2017

New CCTV coming to Churwell Park

Churwell Environmental Volunteers working on the scheme
Morley Town Council is working in partnership with Churwell Environmental Volunteers to bring an additional CCTV camera to Churwell Park. The scheme – which is being financed by Morley town Council – will bring a further camera to the park to oversee the newly refurbished children’s play area.

Cllr Robert Finnigan said “I am grateful for the work the Churwell Environmental Volunteers have put into this scheme in bringing this additional camera to the park. This will keep park users safer and will also mean that play equipment is less likely to be damaged or vandalised.”

CCTV cameras were introduced into Churwell Park a decade ago and have led to reduced vandalism and anti-social behaviour.

Cllr Finnigan said “We are delighted to be working in partnership with Churwell Volunteers who do excellent work across the Churwell area. The finance for this scheme has come from Morley Town Councils Community Infrastructure Levy Fund and we will be looking to use this fund on a programme of improvement works across Morley.”

Sunday, 19 November 2017

Free WIFI scheme for Morley Town Centre a step nearer

The free WIFI programme for Morley Town Centre took a further step forward following a meeting between Councillors and Leeds City Council Street Lighting staff. The scheme – to be financed by Morley Town Council – has the support of local Councillors and Morley MP Andrea Jenkyns and aims to be operational early in the New Year.

Cllr Robert Finnigan, Chairman of Morley Town Centre Management Board said “We have brokered an agreement with Leeds City Councils Street lighting Team to attach the hardware needed to bring the scheme to Morley Town Centre on the lamp standards on Queen Street. This should provide what is needed for free WIFI to be offered to anyone visiting Morley Town Centre.”

 The free WIFI scheme will be used to promote Morley Town Centre, providing news on events and offers from local traders to increase footfall as well  as developing a digital platform for the future aiming to include click and collect options from Morley Town Centre businesses.

 Cllr Finnigan said “We have had excellent support from our MP, Town and City Councillors and Leeds and Morley Councils. We hope to have the full scheme operational early in the New Year.”


Sunday, 5 November 2017

MBIs to debate Housing Target and Universal Credit

Laneside Farm lost to Developers
Morley Borough Independent Councillors will take part in two controversial debates to take place at Leeds City Councils Full Council Meeting this Wednesday.
The first relates to a reduction of the Leeds City Councils Planning Housing Target which will also lead to a vote on a proposed no confidence motion in the Labour Administration by Tory Councillors. This follows Labour Councillors setting of the Core Strategy Housing Target of 70,000 new homes and then agreeing to an early review to reduce the number.

Morley Councillors have campaigned since 2007 to reduce the housing target which covers the City up to 2028. They believed the target was too high and would lead to the loss of many Greenfield sites in Morley and across Leeds.
Cllr Tom Leadley – who has battled to reduce the housing target for over a decade said “The 70,000 plus target was never realistic or achievable but gave developers an option to build on Greenfield sites and ignore previous developed brownfield ones. This has led to the loss of many Greenfield sites in Morley including Owlers Farm, Low Moor Farm and Laneside Farm – all important Morley Greenfield sites. The decision to revise the housing target to reduce it downward will not help Morley as these sites have already been granted planning permission.”

Over 2,000 new homes have been granted planning permission across Morley over the last 5 years but no new schools or other infrastructure proposals have been agreed to cope with the increased demand on local services.

A second debate will be held on the Governments Welfare Reform Flagship – Universal Credit.
Cllr Robert Finnigan, a former welfare rights worker for over 30 years said “The principle of Universal Credit is a sound one with the rights and responsibilities of claimants clearly laid down. The Labour Administration in Leeds wants a pause in its introduction but we are backing Labour MP Frank Fields proposals to make Universal Credit work better.”

Morley Councillors are backing Frank Fields proposals to make Universal Credit payable on a fortnightly basis – rather than after 6 weeks and are also backing the removal of rent payments from Universal Credit with payments being returned directly to Landlords.
Cllr Finnigan said “The Labour Administration seems to have no proposals as to how to make Universal Credit work better. We back Frank Fields proposals which make work pay, keep roofs over claimant’s heads and make it more manageable for those on low incomes to cope.”