Thursday January 28 2021



In Full . . .

Parish of little benefit to me

Posted on April 18 2013 at 11:31:12

I was very interested to read the letter from Coun Smith in the April Village and also the comments under the heading Village View regarding Alvechurch Parish Council.

But, hang on, before we get too euphoric, let us look at a few facts.

Firstly, I would recommend all parishioners to examine carefully their Council Tax demand. They will note that neither county, police or fire and rescue have raised their tax over the past year.

Bromsgrove has raised their tax by 1.9 per cent, but I have no real quibble with that. However, look at the figure for Alvechurch, for which no index is applied – this has in fact risen by some nine per cent over the year, which is fairly typical.

This is the amount that is paid by each household and, in my case, comes to well over £300 in the past seven years. For this I get a watching brief on the street lamps and an occasional trim of highway hedges.

The next item on the demand is the full parish precept. Again over the past seven years this shows that well over half a million pounds has been poured into the parish coffers.
A few years ago I was able to break down the precept and found that 48 per cent of the figure was absorbed in wages and allowances.

I have no reason to believe the situation has improved this year. Incidentally, am I right in thinking that Alvechurch is the only parish to employ a deputy clerk?

Turning to another point, am I also not right in thinking that most parish councillors have been co-opted through the back door? So much for democracy.

Granted it is possible to find largely ancillary measures for the parish council to support, but generally I submit that it is a cosy, undemocratic, spendthrift, self-perpetuating organisation.

Perhaps, some day, we can declare UDI and join Lickey End, who have no such thing as a parish council. I, for one, would be much better off.

Ian Hayes, Bordesley

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