Helping Young People

Young people have had a tough time during lockdown, but the Youth Information Service can help. Jenni has given part of her ward budget to fund one-to-one counselling and advice. If you need help, ring 01908 892998, chat on messenger at m.me/YiSMentalHealth or see the website at www.mkyis.org.uk. Leo, who is a board member of YIS, says “The work they do helps young people work out how to deal with the problems they are facing. It’s a lifesaver.”

Scooter Trouble

Electric scooters are very popular – but the scheme is being abused. Scooters are being driven on pavements, left abandoned, and used by under-age drivers. Now Vanessa is working with MK Council to tighten up the scheme. if you spot any problems, please let Vanessa McPake know.

Replacing Buses

During COVID bus numbers have fallen, leaving bus companies with huge losses. Government support stops on 31st March. Rather than lose the services completely, MK Council has commissioned Via to provide an extended service called MKConnect, using shared taxis, some electric, and some disabled adapted. Some buses will remain along our local routes, but times and routes will change so check the website. Many other services will end. Via will offer a service in most parts of MK, from 6am to 11pm Mon-Sat and 9am-6pm Sunday. See the Council website for more details of how to book, tickets, etc.

Cllr John Howson, the best choice for Police and Crime Commissioner

A police service, not a police force

John Howson image

Experienced County Councillor John Howson is the Liberal Democrat candidate for the Police and Crime Commissioner elections on May 6th.

John, who has extensive experience representing residents in Oxfordshire, has highlighted the failure of Thames Valley Police to hit its own target to reduce knife crime. He is supporting the campaign to end suspicion-less ‘stop and search’ and will increase funding for victim support.

For too long, Thames Valley have not solved enough crimes. If elected, John will ensure that they have the resources to improve this, including protecting the number of frontline police officers.

During their time in office the current Conservative PCC has raised their allocation of council tax by close to 50%, while cutting the number of officers available to police our streets. John promises to provide value for money, and to protect vital services.

John has announced he has no plans to merge fire and rescue services with the police. Even though powers have been given to Police and Crime Commissioners to do this. The Conservatives have failed to give clarity on this issue.

Vote for Cllr John Howson on May 6th for more accountability, experience and to put victims first.

You can find out more about Cllr John Howson and the Police and Crime Commissioner elections by contacting John at:

[email protected] or by visiting www.oxonlibdems.uk/JohnHowsonPCC for news updates.

THREE KEY MESSAGES

  • Better support for victims
  • Stop discrimination in the use of stop and search
  • Improve detection rates

Manifesto Priorities for the May 2021 Local Council Elections

Milton Keynes Liberal Democrats are proud to support the eight manifesto priorities for the May Local Council Elections.

  • Reduce child poverty, because every child deserves a good start in life.
  • Tackle unaffordable housing and homelessness, because everyone deserves a secure place to call home.
  • Help our children and young people, so they can thrive through their lives.
  • Fight for better health and social care, so that our residents have the support they need.
  • Look after our neighbourhoods, so they are tidy, safe and places that residents of MK can be proud of.
  • Create a carbon neutral Milton Keynes by 2030, so that we become a truly green city.
  • Improve and innovate our public transport, so public transport becomes a real choice for residents.
  • Rebuild the local economy and keep a balanced council budget, so that we have a stable recovery from COVID-19.

Link to manifesto page
Link to download PDF of the manifesto

Vanessa McPake photo

Vanessa McPake is standing as the Liberal Democrat candidate for the Monkston Ward. She has been a local campaigner for the Monkston Ward for over 15 years.

She is known as the person who “gets things done” and has helped many many residents get their issues solved. Vanessa, a retired trainer and business woman, campaigns to keep the local environment safe, clean and green for residents. She is also an active member of local bus and rail user groups.

As a grandparent, she is passionate about the facilities and services children and young people need. In her share time, she is a keen spectator of football and cricket.

Remember …

  • VANESSA MCPAKE works hard for our area all year round
  • Vanessa has helped thousands of residents to resolve their problems.

Council Housing for Kents Hill

MK Council wants to build some Council homes on the waste land between the allotments and the playing fields at Kents Hill. Kents Hill has no Council homes at all, which means local people needing affordable housing have a very long wait, or have to move elsewhere.

The Council is consulting now about the “development brief” which lines up the planning policies which will apply. See the proposals, and have your say at www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/consultations/629 The deadline is 22 March.

The final version of the brief will be decided sometime in June, and after that they will develop actual plans. Residents will be consulted at that stage too. They hope to get a planning application approved by around Christmas, and then development will start mid 2022.

They hope to use a new construction design approach, Wikihouses, which really speeds up the build time, so it could be finished over the winter of 2022-23.

Ideas also include offering some homes as shared ownership, where the residents will put time in, rather than money, as apprentices learning the build skills, and build their own homes, which is much easier with this method. They can then go on to work on other sites in MK.

Please let us know if you have any concerns, or if you want to be kept informed at each stage.

Conservative Planning Rules = Less Public Consultation

Jenni Ferrans won cross party support to object to this and get it right for Milton Keynes. But the Government will make the decision.

The Conservative Government are planning big changes to the planning system, including less local control, quicker decisions and set targets for building. This will mean less affordable housing and planning committees potentially stopped. Residents and councillors will have no opportunity to complain about many planning applications. This will also mean many estates will look the same, with no local atmosphere or identity – Plastic Communities. Jenni Ferrans has been looking at the implications in the White Paper entitled Planning for the Future.

The Government want to change the planning system, meaning the Government will tell Milton Keynes Council how many houses to build and developers can build what they like. Local people will have no say”. Jenni is keen for local voices to be heard; she is worried we will have big estates with no facilities. Usually, developers have to provide a grant to help build doctors surgeries and schools, (Section 106). “This system will mean we lose all that, leaving it to the Government to tell us how our streets and homes will look like and what services and infrastructure, from roads and parks, to schools and local centres, we get.”

Please let your MP know what you think of the new proposals – and copy us in your email! Thanks.