‘Small victories’ as AVDC agrees to talk

Cllr Robin Stuchbury,left and his son Jack Stuchbury from Buckingham.'110414M-D333
Cllr Robin Stuchbury,left and his son Jack Stuchbury from Buckingham.'110414M-D333

DISTRICT Councillor for Buckingham Robin Stuchbury has welcomed the council tax freeze agreed by Aylesbury Vale District Council (AVDC) on Wednesday night.

After previously proposing to raise council tax by 2.5 per cent, councillors apparently had a change of heart at their budget-setting meeting on Wednesday night, resulting in AVDC agreeing to freeze council tax for the coming financial year.

Councillor Stuchbury, who voted for the budget, said: “People have told me they can’t afford the rise. I had to vote in the interests of those people. Many people who spoke to me were on modest pensions or living off a redundancy. When people are pleading with you on the phone, you have to take them seriously.”

But while he voted for the budget, Mr Stuchbury said he voted against AVDC’s capital expenditure programme because it only included one project in the north of the Vale.

He said: “The capital expenditure budget had committed New Homes Bonus money to bringing on-stream the waste centre.

“There’s nothing in it that would support the north of the Vale apart from £40,000 for a wall in Marsh Gibbon.”

But he said there had also been two victories to come out of the meeting.

“I put it to them they should revisit their capital programme in future years and councillor Michael Edmonds, cabinet member for economic development, agreed to meet me about future capital expenditure projects in Buckingham,” he said. “I think that’s a small victory.”

And he added: “Councillor Blake has agreed the district council will have meetings with towns and parishes about how the New Homes Bonus will be used in future years.

“I’m looking for the long game.”