Teamwork loses out in battle of political rhetoric

Coun Philip Shields
Coun Philip Shields

Political column: Coun Phil Shields of Progressive Labour on Mansfield District Council’s budget and the Clean Up Mansfield Day.

So the budget has been set since my last column.

It is getting more and more difficult in these days of cuts to come up with a balanced budget, but this year through hard team work by all Councillors and the Mayor I believed we as a “team” had come together to help move our town forward in a financially controlled and structured way. But – no!

Then the political rhetoric kicks in and it is not about team work and working together it is all about political one up man ship in a quest to attract votes.

In his Chad column the Labour Leader would have you believe it was the Labour Councillors who made this budget possible.

Absolute rubbish, it was by the Select Commission’s doing their job in recommending additions to the budget and the Mayor and Cabinet listening and agreeing to the proposals.

There are two parts to negotiating of which listening is the most important.

I am sure it is this same political one up man ship which puts seventy five per cent plus of our electorate off voting at election time.

I am sure this same one-up-manship will only get worse over the next year as the big political machines get in full swing for the elections in May 2015.

I would love to see the overall vote increase to above fifty per cent then we may have true representation at a local level, so let’s see if we can make it happen.

On a brighter note we are working towards our second International Clean up Mansfield Day, which will take place on the 2nd April, we already have interest from six Mansfield’s across the world it would be great to see more community groups get involved to make it an even bigger success than last year.

There are lots of commemorative events throughout the District around the First World War centenary it is really important we do forget the impact of this catastrophe and the impact it had on our communities. I am sure no one would like to glorify war and hope the events being planned do not do this, however it would be great to see these events taking place over the next four years and then truly celebrate the armistice on 11th

It is purely by coincidence that two of our Green Flag parks also celebrate their centenary this year, Titchfield and Yeoman Hill. I am sure the Friends Groups will have plenty of events to plan, as always we will be helping them as much as possible.

Parks and green spaces are of upmost importance to our District and I believe that the quality of these have improved dramatically over the last couple of years.

With this in mind I have put forward two more for the coveted Green Flag Status.

This could give us as many as seven Green Flags throughout the District, something we should all be proud of.