Portlanders label town mayor nomination a 'complete farce' following precept revolt (From Dorset Echo)
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Portlanders label town mayor nomination a 'complete farce' following precept revolt
ANGRY Portlanders have hit out in a dispute over the nomination of town mayor in the aftermath of a revolt caused by the 1,000 per cent precept proposal.
Councillors have met to nominate the Portland Town Mayor – and the results have been labelled as a ‘complete farce’ by residents.
Cllr Tim Munro was nominated with no contest for the role of mayor, with Rob Hughes becoming the official nominee for deputy over Richard Denton-White.
People have voiced criticisms against Cllr Munro filling the role after he ‘led the way’ with the proposed council tax precept increase.
The increase was scrapped last month following a backlash and a rise of 1.99 per cent was accepted.
While Cllr Munro accepts responsibility for putting the resolution forward, he said the whole council was ‘responsible’ for voting on it.
Meanwhile, Cllr Sandra Reynolds said she wanted nothing more to do with the council and is expected to resign, although this has yet to be done officially.
Cllr Munro said: “I take responsibility for putting the resolution forward concerning the council tax precept but it was voted for by all councillors.
“The whole council is responsible.”
Speaking about becoming mayor, he added: “The role of mayor will be hard work and the work of restructuring the council which began in November will continue as well as taking on services that were once under Dorset County Council or the borough council.”
Cllr Reynolds said: “Tim Munro knows that he is quite loathed on this island but he still went up for mayor. “I want nothing more to do with it.”
Portland resident Ken Leicester said the idea of Tim Munro being appointed as island mayor was a ‘complete and utter farce’.
He said: “This cannot be allowed. This man has not been popular since he led the way with the idea of 1,000 per cent council tax precept increase.
“The people called for a vote of no confidence in this council so this is a complete and utter farce.”
Beach clean-up organiser Storm Wallace said: “I think that decision has pretty much destroyed any hope the islanders had left for the council.
“The next election will certainly be very interesting.”
Resident John Thorner said: “The fact that Tim Munro is running for mayor just shows how Portland Town Council is.”
Town councillor Andy Matthews said he urged councillors not to nominate a mayor this year.
He said: “I would rather have seen a chairman instead of a mayor.
“It would have sent a message that the council is moving forward away from the council tax precept issue.”
Current mayor Les Ames will be replaced at the formal mayor making ceremony on May 21.
NO ONE has come forward to stand for election following the resignation last month of Cllr Rachel Barton.
The vacancy for Tophill West will now be filled by co-option, which means the town council will appoint someone.
Mrs Barton walked away from local politics ‘disillusioned’ and urged her fellow councillors to stand down.
Her resignation prompted a by-election and nominations were sought for candidates.
The deadline was March 14 but there was no interest shown.
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