Author Archives: Maureen Rigg

Opinion: Council dilemma – to raise or not to raise?

As councils across the country wrestle with this year’s Council Tax dilemma, here’s just one example of the dynamics involved.

To Raise or not to Raise? That’s the burning question to be answered early in 2012. Should Stockton Council accept the bribe on offer from the government to keep the Council Tax at the same level as last year, or ignore the offer and raise the tax?

On the surface it sounds like a no-brainer. Why wouldn’t we vote to keep the tax at the same level as last year when all around us residents are having to find more …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 12 Comments

Opinion: Who will keep us safe from the men in black with big guns?

Party conferences are different when you’re in government as we found out at Liverpool last year. I didn’t go to Sheffield in spring but I heard from good friends that some of the demonstrators there were very aggressive and made it difficult for people with mobility problems to safely access the conference.

This year at Birmingham I saw something new again – machine guns being carried by police outside the conference. This wasn’t by officers patrolling the streets outside the secure zone. No, it was inside, where people had already come past 3 separate checks that …

Posted in Conference and Op-eds | Tagged | 14 Comments

Opinion: So what’s it really like on the doorsteps?

A week after nominations closed for the Borough council elections, what’s the reception like on the doorsteps here in Stockton?

To be honest, it’s a bit mixed. In wards where we have Liberal Democrat councillors, the reception is generally good. There are always some people who “don’t do politics”, and that hasn’t changed. There are some who were always going to vote for one of the other parties, and that hasn’t changed. There are many who support us, either because they’re committed Lib Dems (not …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , , , and | 2 Comments

Opinion: campaigning for a better rail service

Here at Eaglescliffe we have a great airport on our doorsteps – still known as Teesside Airport to most of us despite the best efforts of the owners to change it to Durham Tees Valley. From my house I can take a 10 minute walk in the other direction to a railway station with a reasonably frequent service going past the airport on its way to Darlington.

The airport has a railway station too – ideal you might think. Think again. Trains stop there once in each direction on Saturdays and now on Sundays too. …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , , , and | 5 Comments
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