Editorial comment: Spending on Javelin Park is just ‘immoral’

Comment: Spending on Javelin Park is just ‘immoral’

Comment: Spending on Javelin Park is just ‘immoral’

First published in News
Last updated
Stroud News and Journal: Photograph of the Author by , Editor

IT IS hard to believe that in a democracy a public, accountable, authority has been allowed to spend so much taxpayers’ money on something the majority of people don’t want.

Worse it continues to keep people in the dark about the true cost of what is fast becoming a folly.

The application to spend £500 million on an incinerator at Javelin Park was unanimously refused in March 2013.

Gloucestershire County Council had already spent £3 million of our money prior to this before it was refused by its own committee members.

This contract was signed without any planning approval.

The clause said GCC would have to pay a staggering penalty charge if it was cancelled was signed without any approval.

The council then funded the appeal against its own decision to refuse, to the tune of £346,000.

You just couldn’t make it up.

And now as every day passes until Secretary of State Eric Pickles makes his decision, we are all left wondering how much more this is going to cost to cancel if the decision finally goes against the incinerator.

Councillors are quite right to be asking questions.

We need to know and we have a right to know how much more this is likely to cost given – it has now been on appeal for more than a year.

Last year we endured an eye-watering round of financial cuts to essential services and we are braced for more this year.

Since it was first suggested in 2005 the proposal to build an incinerator at Javelin Park has been shambolic.

Continuing to spend our money on this farcical project is not only shameful but downright immoral.

Comments (5)

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11:21am Sun 10 Aug 14

Rock Cake says...

Is this truly a news article written by a "SNJ Reporter" as claimed, or is it a letter of complaint over the proposed incinerator to the SNJ from an unnamed member of the public? The way it reads with references to "we" and "our" would suggest it is the latter. Could the SNJ Editor please clarify?
Is this truly a news article written by a "SNJ Reporter" as claimed, or is it a letter of complaint over the proposed incinerator to the SNJ from an unnamed member of the public? The way it reads with references to "we" and "our" would suggest it is the latter. Could the SNJ Editor please clarify? Rock Cake
  • Score: 3

1:08pm Sun 10 Aug 14

Haloge says...

It's good to see that the right hand still doesn't know that the left hand exists.
It's good to see that the right hand still doesn't know that the left hand exists. Haloge
  • Score: 1

5:35pm Sun 10 Aug 14

Rock Cake says...

Amen, @Halgoe. I have had concerns for some time that the Editorial control over certain articles appearing in this publication are without proper validation and verification. For the SNJ to put out pieces like this detailed only as generated by an "SNJ Reporter" has made me wonder if we still have a respected newspaper, or simply a web-based vehicle for individual's concerns to be put across on the internet? In retrospect, we all have concerns over the incinerator, but this piece comes across as a seemingly validated piece of journalism from the SNJ simply because it comes under the banner of "Comment" and titled as being drafted by a "SNJ Reporter". It is neither impartial or referenced as one would expect from a respected newspaper.
Amen, @Halgoe. I have had concerns for some time that the Editorial control over certain articles appearing in this publication are without proper validation and verification. For the SNJ to put out pieces like this detailed only as generated by an "SNJ Reporter" has made me wonder if we still have a respected newspaper, or simply a web-based vehicle for individual's concerns to be put across on the internet? In retrospect, we all have concerns over the incinerator, but this piece comes across as a seemingly validated piece of journalism from the SNJ simply because it comes under the banner of "Comment" and titled as being drafted by a "SNJ Reporter". It is neither impartial or referenced as one would expect from a respected newspaper. Rock Cake
  • Score: 0

2:20am Mon 11 Aug 14

Haloge says...

Mmmmmm

It does sound like something straight out of the Letters Page.

Will we be graced with a name other than the enigmatic "SNJ Reporter"?

The plot thickens.
Mmmmmm It does sound like something straight out of the Letters Page. Will we be graced with a name other than the enigmatic "SNJ Reporter"? The plot thickens. Haloge
  • Score: 0

2:50pm Mon 11 Aug 14

tomttom says...

Thank you Sue for highlighting this issue again for us, we do deserve better from our Council. The costs you talk about here are only the tip of the iceberg, and it has certainly been shameful.
A few weeks before the County's planning committee met to consider the application the Council signed up to a contract for a much outdated, huge and very environmentally damaging incinerator - with 'compensation' clauses. 4,355 people wrote to object. The planning Committee (which acts as our Council at this point) then unanimously rejects the application. Not marginal rejection, unanimous. At a public inquiry 29 spoke against including two MP's and one ex MP, and County Council, Stroud District Council and most parish councils (rightly) spent local taxpayers money to object. The Council then votes in full session on two separate occasions to recognize the strong objection to the incinerator by the people of Gloucestershire and to robustly defend the planning decision to reject the incinerator.
Yet we still have the deputy leader of the Council giving misinformation in support of the incinerator (claiming £150M saving for something that will simply lock us into a wasteful £500M contract) and refusing to say what the compensation / penalty will be - or how this farcical saving figure has been arrived at.
I'm sorry, I certainly agree with the Editor that it is shameful that a Council should act in this way, wasting public resources, not looking for alternatives and continuing to try to force the incinerator on us despite several full votes on the contrary. And the lack of openness is awful, thank you to Stroud News and Journal for seeking to shine a light on this for us.
What is the point of local democracy if we cannot ask our Council to deliver the cheaper and far more environmentally sound solution we want?
Thank you Sue for highlighting this issue again for us, we do deserve better from our Council. The costs you talk about here are only the tip of the iceberg, and it has certainly been shameful. A few weeks before the County's planning committee met to consider the application the Council signed up to a contract for a much outdated, huge and very environmentally damaging incinerator - with 'compensation' clauses. 4,355 people wrote to object. The planning Committee (which acts as our Council at this point) then unanimously rejects the application. Not marginal rejection, unanimous. At a public inquiry 29 spoke against including two MP's and one ex MP, and County Council, Stroud District Council and most parish councils (rightly) spent local taxpayers money to object. The Council then votes in full session on two separate occasions to recognize the strong objection to the incinerator by the people of Gloucestershire and to robustly defend the planning decision to reject the incinerator. Yet we still have the deputy leader of the Council giving misinformation in support of the incinerator (claiming £150M saving for something that will simply lock us into a wasteful £500M contract) and refusing to say what the compensation / penalty will be - or how this farcical saving figure has been arrived at. I'm sorry, I certainly agree with the Editor that it is shameful that a Council should act in this way, wasting public resources, not looking for alternatives and continuing to try to force the incinerator on us despite several full votes on the contrary. And the lack of openness is awful, thank you to Stroud News and Journal for seeking to shine a light on this for us. What is the point of local democracy if we cannot ask our Council to deliver the cheaper and far more environmentally sound solution we want? tomttom
  • Score: 2

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