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From Brentford TV Debate not Hate:NEW LEADER THANKS STEVE CURRAN. "I am honoured and humbled the Labour Group has elected me as their new leader and I am very grateful for the support of my colleagues." – Cllr Shantanu Rajawat last night (Monday).Cllr Rajawat added: "I want to thank Steve Curran, our outgoing leader, for all his hard work and fantastic achievements over the last eight years. Under his last administration, in which I proudly served, we built over 1,000 council homes, were independently recognised as having the best roads and among the best parks in London, and we won Council of the Year."I am committed to building on the best work of the last administration, working to tackle climate change and air pollution, improve our estates and communities, and build social housing."But I also want us to forge out in new directions to build an even better borough. Fundamentally, residents and businesses want a listening Council. I want to work across the borough for cleaner streets and more opportunities for young people in Hounslow."I want to give local people every chance for their voices to be heard on local decisions so that everyone in Hounslow, from Chiswick to Cranford has a seat at the table. I want us to be transparent in our ambitions for the borough and how we will go about realising them. Ours will be a borough for all our residents and ours will be an administration that is always on their side."Katherine Dunne was elected Deputy Leader.

Vanessa Smith ● 57d3 Comments ● 43d

Labour Party record on environmental issues

It is interesting to see in a recent posting how opposition to this council’s road closures is seen as anti-environmental – emotive phrases like “gas guzzlers” being used, as though this is indeed a “green” policy. What about LBH’s other policies – are they so green? What will be the environmental cost of tearing down Tesco in Osterley and rebuilding it less than a mile away – or Morrisons – or Watermans – or any or the other council-supported acts of architectural sabotage. Is the demolition of fairly modern, and perfectly fit for purpose, buildings good for the people of Hounslow? What about the scrapping of free garden waste collection – how many extra journeys to the council tip, and tonnes of carbon dioxide, has this generated – another “green” policy? Or what about LBH’s woeful record on recycling – this website ranks this borough as 21st out of 33 London boroughs, or 297 out of 345 in England, for the amount of household waste being recycled – an appalling failure. Labour administration has clearly failed completely in its responsibility to environmental issues – it’s time to get rid of these dinosaurs from the last century and elect people fit for the challenge of 21st century life, with honest policies that will actually benefit all of us – rather than the LTN lies and relentless over-development that we have become used to.

Graham Thorpe ● 68d7 Comments ● 61d

The unaccountable council

With the local elections coming up I thought it would be a good time to try and understand the perceived unaccountability of Hounslow council and the decisions it 'forces' upon residents.I am a resident of Orchard Road and I along with many other residents are dealing with the unilateral decision of the council to close the Orchard Road carpark. I understand that this situation doesn't directly affect many residents in Brentford but the way the council have acted throughout the process should concern everyone in the borough.The loss of a carpark so close to Brentford station was going to have a huge impact on the local resident parking. The council started with the usual consultation process with residents. After voicing concerns through the consultation process the council decided to ignore those concerns and push ahead with the closure and redevelopment of the parking area. At this stage residents were forced to fund raise for a specialist consultant to engage with the council regarding its plans. The consultant managed to get some conditions attached to the planning approval regarding the loss of parking in the area.So far the council have not met with those conditions (though they dispute this) and have not provided the appropriate replacement parking solutions that were promised. One 'car space' that was provided was an extension to an existing parking bay of 3.9m when the minimum requirement for a car space is 4.5m. None of this matters because the council are essentially marking their own homework and declaring that contrary to the evidence provided by residents, they have met all the planning requirements and have gone ahead and started the redevelopment.This was a community resource, used by local residents, visitors and of course provided parking for people using Brentford rail station. What right does the council have to take this resource away? in my opinion it was not theirs to take, it was owned by the local residents.What is the point of consulting residents when the council just ignore the findings of said consultations? They have also decided to leave (after further consultation) the current CPZ times and restrictions in place. So for roads surrounding the station we are now finding that on weekends and after 1730 weekdays it is becoming almost impossible to find a car parking space.There really does seem to be no accountability from the council to residents. They do a box ticking exercise (consultation) ignore the outcomes and push ahead with what they want anyway. As local residents it feels that we are absolutely powerless in these types of situations.To be clear the residents were never against redevelopment we only ever asked to be compensated for our loss of parking with a suitable replacement proposal.

Jeremy Weekes ● 68d23 Comments ● 62d

Hounslow Friends of the Earth asks all candidates to divest Council pension fund from fossil fuels

Hounslow Borough Friends of the Earth have been campaigning for Hounslow's Pension Fund to stop investing local workers’ money in planet-wrecking fossil fuels.Investing local pensions in fossil fuels is fueling climate change and air pollution, contradicting local, national and international commitments to tackle climate change. It is also putting members’ pensions in jeopardy as fossil fuel investments now pose a dangerous long-term financial risk to investors.Instead, to move toward a zero-carbon future we need to phase out the use of fossil fuels. This means we need to limit the extraction and production of fossil fuels as part of a managed and just transition. There are already far more known fossil fuel reserves than can possibly be burned to stay within globally agreed targets for limiting global heating yet the fossil fuel companies that our pension funds invest in continue to expand.Institutions, such as local government pension funds, can take practical action by moving their direct and indirect investments out of the fossil fuel industry.We think this election is the perfect time for our council to take their impressive climate leadership plans to the next level by committing to stop investing in the biggest polluters in the world, and plan how this money can be invested in the local economy instead.More than 300 candidates have signed the UK Divest pledge in all 3 nations. Support has come from across the political spectrum with candidates representing the Labour, Conservative, Liberal Democrat, Green, Plaid Cymru and Scottish National Parties.How many candidates from the borough of Hounslow will join these 300 candidates?Hounslow Borough Friends of the Earth is calling all candidates to publicly back the following pledge:“If elected, I will do all I can to ensure the council pension fund ends investment in fossil fuels and invests in a just transition to a zero-carbon economy.”Candidates can register their pledges here: Hounslow borough residents who want to support the campaign and call on candidates to pledge to divest the pension fund from fossil fuels, can find all the resources they need here:

Mariette Labelle ● 68d1 Comments ● 68d