Members' Open Questions
A 45-minute period in which members may ask questions of the Leader, Cabinet Members, the Chairmen and Vice-Chairmen of the Overview and Scrutiny Committees and opposition group leaders excluding the Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Development Management Committee, Licensing and Alcohol, Entertainment and Late Night Refreshment Licensing Committees and Governance and Audit Committee.
Councillor Wood referred to a question that had been put to the Cabinet Member for Housing at the last meeting of Council. The question related to the fitting of gas boilers that had subsequently been found to have a design fault. Councillor Wood asked the Cabinet Member for Housing what action had been taken since the last meeting of Council.
The Cabinet Member for Housing stated that enquiries were progressing and that the Council had written to the manufacturer and other stakeholders; a response was still awaited. The Cabinet Member for Housing agreed to forward to Councillor Wood the information that had been shared with Councillor Dilks following his question at the last meeting of Council.
Councillor Craft asked where he could find out which charities and good causes had benefited from LotterySK and how much they had been given.
The Deputy Leader stated that this information should be published on the charities and good causes page of the LotterySK website, committing to check and confirm directly to Councillor Craft.
Councillor Baxter referred to a recent economic summit held at Grimsthorpe Castle. He stated that he had been advised that as the capacity at the summit was not sufficient to accommodate all Councillors, the Leader would speak to the Council about the event. Councillor Baxter enquired when information about the event would be shared with Councillors.
The Leader stated that he continued to talk about the summit and the Council’s growth ambitions at all sorts of meetings. He added that he would respond to requests from Councillors to address them about the summit. He said he had received positive feedback from the business community and expressed disappointment that the only negativity he had experienced in respect of the event had been from within the Council Chamber.
Councillor Selby asked whether, given the strong feelings that Margaret Thatcher could provoke, the Leader agreed that there should be a local referendum on whether her statue should be brought to Grantham.
The Leader referred to Baroness Thatcher’s achievements as an international stateswoman and the longest-serving Prime Minister of the twentieth century. She was also the first woman and the first scientist to become Prime Minister. He related the link to her scientific work with what was emerging as the unique selling point for Grantham. He added that in his time, Sir Isaac Newton was equally as controversial.
The Leader concluded by saying that a commitment had been made that no public money would be spent on the erection of the statue, nor would he consider spending public money on a referendum.
Councillor Peter Stephens referred to compensation that was being requested by Network Rail in respect of the Grantham Southern Relief Road and asked how negotiations were proceeding.
The Leader stated that he would be happy to write to all Councillors giving details of how matters were progressing, highlighting the importance of the Southern Relief Road for the delivery of other developments in Grantham.