Opinion: Disgraceful pavements and roads, rising crime and litter continue to blight borough
PUBLISHED: 08:30 06 July 2019
One of my concerns when dealing with council matters is the way people are being treated by the council and their officials.
In some cases, residents feel that they are treated with utter contempt. The council should respond in good time and in good faith. When they don't or the resident is not satisfied we, the councillors, have to get involved.
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In some cases, decisions made can lead to utter distress for people who have little or no recourse.
If you're dealing with a retailer or service provider who doesn't give you the service that you've paid for, you either don't pay or you can demand your money back. But residents, who let's face it are in reality customers of the council, have no choice but to pay their council tax bill. There are hefty penalties for those who don't pay.
Brent Council being run by a vast Labour majority, take every opportunity to increase the council tax by the maximum allowed. Thankfully there are caps in place, otherwise we would return to the 1980's when the then Labour Council raised the rates (the forerunner to council tax) to eye-watering levels.
People often ask me what are they paying their council tax for. The roads and pavements are a disgrace, violent crime is on the increase, streets are strewn with rubbish, issues reported don't appear to be dealt with. Excuse after excuses are given as to why the council can't or won't deal with it. Government cuts are always blamed by Brent's Labour administration for this poor service, but let's face it councils and government departments have long had a reputation for giving poor service.