Northumberland Labour Group
Ian Swithenbank, Chairperson
Grant Davey, Leader
Val Tyler, Deputy
Robert Arckless, Secretary
Northumberland NE61 2EF
Telephone (01670) 533000
Fax (01670) 533072
Labour condemns ‘wind turbine stunt’
‘The illegal motion was a major embarrassment for Tory leader’.
A row in Northumberland County Council between Tory Deputy leader Glenn Sanderson and the counties ruling Liberal Democrat group was described by Labour group leader Grant Davey as a ‘distraction from the real job of creating and safeguarding jobs in the county’.
The Labour group, along with MP’s Ronnie Campbell and Ian Lavery have launched a concerted effort to push for more support from the coalition government and greater cross party effort to create and support more jobs in the county. Labour have called for the extension of the proposed Port of Blyth Enterprise Zone to take in the former Alcan site at Lynemouth, have backed calls for the dualling of the A1 and have called for council investment in the county’s ‘under pressure’ farming industry through an all-party action plan.
It was feared that the row over the illegal Conservative motion would undermine future renewable energy investment in Northumberland.
The row broke out after the senior Conservative tabled a ‘controversial motion calling for the drastic reduction in subsidies to the renewable energy industry and increased planning restrictions for onshore wind turbines’. The motion was ruled ‘illegal’ by the council legal officer.
Liberal Democrat Cabinet Member Arthur Pegg labelled Councillor Sanderson as ‘opportunistic and hypocritical’ after Conservative group leader Peter Jackson was disqualified from attendance at the meeting on this motion because of past controversial applications for wind turbines on his own land.
Labour Leader Grant Davey said
‘The row between the Tories and Liberals over wind turbines sends out the wrong message to potential investors in renewable technologies. At least 54 businesses exist across the county that rely on this growing sector and we should be looking to encourage more not to cut opportunities. Councillor Sanderson’s illegal motion was ill conceived, anti-growth and was a major embarrassment to Councillor Jackson who seems to be a fan of renewable technologies’.