On the 7th March the Council’s Executive Committee considered all the points put forward from the disability groups and the local businesses affected by the year long trial ban. They made a resolution to retain the ban in the 4 trial areas but to modify its operation to allow for a licencing scheme where a safe location for siting can be identified. This was notified in a press release with no further information on dates, cost or criteria.

It transpires that certain protocols were not followed in the submission of the information to the Executive and the Health & Social Care Overview & Scrutiny Committee called the matter back to Scrutiny. (The H&SC Overview & Scrutiny Committee are the group who have heard the evidence from both sides and recommended that the Executive implement a full ban.)

Together with Ros Seton from Saltaire, Helen Rhodes attended this meeting on 23rd March. The H&SC O&S C were not at all happy that the Executive had recommended licencing as this was not what Scrutiny wanted and apparently, they have the right to refer the matter back to a full Council meeting, which is what happened.

Cllr Alex Ross-Shaw, speaking on behalf of the Executive advised that the licencing would at least partially fund the monitoring of the scheme as approximately £60k had been spent policing the trial. I’m not sure how this money was spent and whether this figure includes the cost of all the meetings and review processes but they had to admit that BMDC cannot afford the costs of ensuring a ban is enforced. I think the idea is that most people are conformists and would comply with the ban.

Steve Butler has had a communication to say that the next meeting will be held in July.

The advertising in the car park doesn’t meet all the advantages of A boards in that they cannot be changed regularly but they are a good second option so I would suggest you consider taking a space on the next one which will be built at the Clarke Foley end of the car park.