Check out today’s YEP letters
Silence over inquiry result is ‘worrying’
Christopher Todd, Leeds 6
Readers may not be aware that earlier this month the head of NGT, David Haskins, gave a paper at a trolleybus conference in Turkey entitled “The United Kingdom takes the lead” ( http://www.uitp.org/events/uitp-trolleybus-workshop2015).
The section on Leeds in the conference report (http://www.rupprecht-consult.eu/uploads/tx_rupprecht/FINAL_UITP_brochure_trolleybus_DIGITAL_mail.pdf) makes it sound as if the expensive public inquiry into the trolleybus scheme in Leeds had not taken place, despite the fact that there both the counsel for First Bus and the retired professor of transport planning at the University of Leeds, Peter Bonsall, and many others managed to demonstrate quite clearly that the scheme did not fit its purpose.
Here, opposition to NGT is simply dismissed with the phrase: “External stakeholders who don’t have enough information about the project are not able to make informed choices about whether they support the project or not.”
In the conclusion, there is albeit grudgingly admission that the trolleybus represents yesterday’s technology: “The transition of trolleybuses to autonomous electric buses, when technology will allow, should be straight forward; it will replace the trolleybuses’ electric energy management and storage systems with state of the art systems and will remove the overhead contact wires.”
But if NGT went ahead, the change to modernity would not come about before a great deal of environmental damage had been done to trees, conservation areas and communities in both north and south Leeds.
The continuing silence over the result of the inquiry is extremely worrying, and in the light of various actions and statements by those who have a stake is seeing the scheme go ahead, there is a growing suspicion that something is being “cooked up” which will not be in the real interests of the public.
Party of ‘spend, spend, spend’
Hilary Andrews, Leeds
OH dear, another blow for the “straight-talking honest politics” of Jeremy Corbyn and his cronies.
Despite opposition from many in the party who are rightly concerned that Labour is perceived by the people as not being responsible when it comes to the economy, John McDonnell announced that the party was reversing its decision to support George Osborne’s fiscal charter (The Yorkshire Post, October 14). Once again they become the party of “spend, spend, spend” and would lead the country into another Greece. Together with his policy of gathering together a group of MPs into a grassroots organisation, Momentum, which excludes all moderate members, this will surely lead to a shambles. Hopefully it will not last long and Mr Corbyn can go back to opposing all policies from the backbenches.
Concern over tax credit cuts
Lindsay May, Leeds 21
I am writing to express my concern about the government’s proposed cuts to tax credits.
It is unacceptable that working people cannot earn enough to make ends meet without tax credits, particularly when the government seems happy to use tax payers money to give business financial incentives. Are these incentives used to ensure employees are paid a decent wage or simply to improve profits for shareholders?
Listen to those you represent
Christine Eastwood, Leeds 14
I am writing to voice concerns about the impending working tax credit cuts proposed by George Osborne.
They will not effect me at all but I feel I need to speak out for all the families who receive these benefits and will suffer financially if this is allowed to happen!
I feel that if people are willing to work although receiving a low wage, they should be encouraged to do so by having their income topped up to enable them to provide an at least half decent way of life for themselves and their family.
By cutting these benefits do the government not realise that there will be more people who will give up work and they will be paying out more in unemployment benefits? It’s a no brainer.
George Osborne, David Cameron and the Conservative government really need a reality check. Shame on them all! They will deeply will regret putting this plan into action if it goes ahead because the majority of hard working people are in favour Working Tax Credits as opposed to unemployment benefits. Take heed Mr Osborne and associates, you need to listen to the people you are representing.
System causing needless upset
John Furness, by email
With regard to Mr A Carver’s response to the original complaint from Mr Buttree, I feel I must join in bearing in mind I was in correspondence with the Sculpture Park on this specific point some two years ago.
Mr Carver has been dismissive of the complaint in that he makes no reference to that at all in his defence of the parking charges. The fact is, is it not, that each car is subject to Number Plate Recognition as and when it passes through the gate and the charges are incurred from that time whether or not you are parked up! In my case it took me some 25 minutes to find a parking space and upon printing off my ticket, after a five minute walk to the machine, I immediately noted that whereas I had paid for two hours parking, I only received the benefit of one hour 30 minutes left on my ticket. I considered this to be outrageous and duly complained. Needless to say that despite correspondence back and forth, my complaint also came to nothing.
It is clear to see that the system operated by the Park is still causing needless upset. I appreciate the need for a proper system but fail to see why it should not be compulsory for pay and display tickets to be obtained as soon as is possible after achieving a parking space which should time parking from the point of issue. Number Plate Recognition could still be utilised to ensure all users pay the proper charges. Of course if Mr Carver is trying to dissuade visitors from utilising the facilities the Park has to offer, he is going the right way about it.