New assembly aims to help town

Thursday 20th February 2020 7:04 am
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Alton Town Hall where the town council meets ()

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A LOCAL Labour councillor has expressed her delight over a decision to form a special assembly, designed to bring all Alton councillors together, “for the good of the town”.

Having put her case to Alton Town Council, Eastbrooke ward representative, Paula Langley, received a positive response and has confirmed that an inaugural meeting of this new assembly has been set for Wednesday, March 4.

Elected to East Hampshire District Council (EHDC) last May, Ms Langley was surprised to find there was no formal forum where fellow councillors of all levels could meet.

She told the Herald: “Alton has its own town council comprising 13 councillors, seven district councillors who represent the town at EHDC and one Hampshire County Council seat.”

With different political parties involved, Cllr Langley said it had become clear to herself, and fellow Labour councillors, Gideon Cristofoli (Alton Town Council, Eastbrooke) and Stephen Dolan (EHDC, Wooteys) that something needed to be done to bring them all together, for the benefit of the community as a whole.

She said: “It seemed crazy to us that there was no formal mechanism for all Alton councillors from across the councils to meet to discuss issues that face the town.

“It must be right that we can discuss big items, such as the Local Plan, as well as a shared vision for where we feel the town could go.

“We represent residents from different areas of Alton, who face a variety of challenges, and it’s important that we work together, regardless of party affiliations.”

Cllr Dolan said: “Our hope is that this kind of assembly can change that and help us foster better cross party working relationships.”

In welcoming the new assembly, Cllr Cristofoli added: “With issues such as climate change that know no boundaries, political or geographical, it is vital that we work together and listen to each other so that we can do our very best for the people of Alton.”

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