Council for a Democratic Rye Supremo, Dr Keith Taylor, calls for clarity over finance. He enquires about Rother District Council’s employees - who amount to many fewer than its 280 staffing establishment, by far the lowest level in East Sussex. There is a continuing pay freeze and voluntary redundancy programme. Joint working with other Councils started some time ago. Thanks to Rother’s prudence, there is, as yet, minimal impact on front line service delivery despite the direct consequences of the Labour years of cynical profligacy.
It is odd that Dr Taylor is reluctant to ask his closest lieutenants, Cllr Bantick and Cllr Mrs Holmes, past and present members of Rother, for the information which he needs. He will know that Rye has done well in terms of grants. Now that Rye Partnership stands on its own feet, the core grant from Rother has been discontinued.
Discussions regarding devolution of service delivery to Town and Parish Councils are on-going. The central criterion is that there should be no increase in costs to Rother residents generally. What have CDR operatives been doing these past six years? Why do they not report the outcome of their talks with other Parishes? Have they been given a dusty answer?
In concert, another CDR supporter writes of the Bexhill bias at Rother. There is none - either in terms of control or revenue spend. As to capital spend, it is true that there is current sizeable investment in Bexhill sea front (Corporate Plan 2006-16, drafted in Cllr Bantick’s and Cllr Souster’s time). A few years ago, it was Rye’s turn with the new Sports Centre and Swimming Pool (which will cost the Rother taxpayer £!52,000 this year).
Dr Taylor will not believe it - but Rother’s successes are real; and would be even greater if our Town Council would join in meaningful partnership working. Instead, the CDR generals appear to want to lead us into trench warfare. There is a considerable irony here. The more some people stir up a visceral hatred of “Rother” and demand the reinstatement of the old Rye Borough, the more isolated our Town Council becomes.
Bodies such as the Chamber of Commerce and Fletcher Group now tend to bypass it and form their own connections, which include Rother, in order to get things done for Rye.
Cllr David Russell,
Rye Hill, Rye