Spring Update from Tony Devenish AM

Police Station Front Counter Closures 

Mayor Sadiq Khan’s tenure (two years in May 2018) is shaping up to be a triumph of spin over substance! - Nearly half way through Mayor Sadiq Khan's four-year term it is becoming ever more clear that Assembly Members have a big job on our hands - the Mayor has been condemned by the Independent Consultation Institute for "the worst consultation of 2017" for the way Sadiq Khan handled police station front counter closures - ignoring wide spread community concerns across London and especially in Belgravia and Notting Hill within our GLA

Housing 

Sadiq Khan has also failed to build almost any additional housing - whilst agreeing to Housing Estate Regeneration ballots and issuing a draft Strategic London Plan, which threatens further densified housing without any detail about how so called "good design" will happen. The Mayor’s eye-catching promises included the delivery of 80,000 homes a year and ensuring that 50 per cent of all new homes would be “genuinely affordable”. He committed to be the Mayor to ” Get London Building” and solve our housing crisis. Or so he said. Now he denies even making such a pledge, despite it remaining clearly visible on his election website. And refuses to provide target for the number of new homes he wants to see built in London, to the exasperation of even his own party colleagues.

Transport 

The most worrying policy of Mr Khan's to date has been his mis-management of Transport for London - which after months of scrutiny by the London Assembly is now making front page news. My constituents are some of the most commercially-minded, numerate people in the UK. Unlike the Mayor, they understand that any business plan which assumes a 30% increase in Tube customers by the year 2021, would be laughed ‘out of court’. That is what Transport for London under this Mayor is saying, despite the fact that current passenger numbers are falling. The Mayor has already had to cancel vital Tube upgrade works on the Jubilee and Northern Lines. We the GLA Conservatives have consistently warned Sadiq Khan that his « fairly-tale » budget will be disastrous for London transport unless he changes course.

TfL mates rates 

My colleagues and I at the London Assembly called on Sadiq Khan to remove the long-term travel perk Transport for London offers to flatmates and lodgers of their employees ! It remains to be seen if Sadiq Khan will accept any of our proposals. We would scrap nominee passes to save approximately £132M over 4 years. If the Mayor isn’t willing to make these sensible savings, the reality is that he will be forced to cut back further on infrastructure spending. That means less chance of step-free access at Tube stations, a slowdown in signalling and service improvements on the Underground and fewer cycling and road junction improvements.

Local Constituency Matters 

The terrible Grenfell Tower fire continues to be at the forefront of all of our minds. I cross examined many of the senior local government officers who lead the Grenfell Tower response alongside our emergency services at a GLA Oversight Committee meeting on 23 November 2017.

Much of my time is rightly spent on matters individual constituents and business bring to my attention - recent highlights include:

  • Tube noise – November 2017 meeting with the Mayor himself and TfL
  •  Anti-social behaviour: police/council joint working
  • Small medium business procurement (from the public sector)
  • Oxford Street so called 'pedestrianisation'
  • Cycle Highway 9 (Hammersmith) and Cycle Highway 11 (North Westminster)
  • Heathrow expansion congestion and a host of air quality issues
  • Moped Crime/Tri-Borough Police Mergers

Key Dates 

The Assembly holds the Mayor and Mayoral advisers to account by publicly examining policies and programmes through committee meetings, plenary sessions, site visits and investigations. They are on: 

17th May        21st June        19th July

Whether you’ve got something you want raised with the Mayor, or a view on how to improve services in London I would be happy to hear from you.

Telephone: 020 7983 6576         Email: tony.devenish@london.gov.uk

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