Sunday 4 October 2015
UKIP Councillor’s Hypocrisy
During party conference season, Nigel “Thirsty” Farage and his fellow saloon bar propper-uppers at UKIP have not had much success getting the media attention they crave, and their foot soldiers on town and parish councils have done even less well. So it was no surprise to see Richard Lee, who represented the Kippers in Crewe and Nantwich at the last General Election, scraping the barrel to get himself some attention.
Lee, who represents Leighton on the Minshull Vernon and Leighton Parish Council, has seen that Labour controlled Crewe Town Council are to buy office space in Chantry Court, in the town centre, after attempts to rent in Municipal Buildings were thwarted by Tory controlled Cheshire East Council. Because they are buying from shopworkers’ Union USDAW, Lee suspects foul play. But he’s not paranoid, oh no.
A town council spokesman tried to point out it was a straightforward property transaction: “It’s a straight forward transaction between the buyer and vendor in the commercial market. It’s just a coincidence, until talking to the agent we didn’t know they (USDAW) owned it. Negotiations have been taking place between the town council and the agent and vendor”. That doesn’t wash with the Kippers.
“I think by virtue of the town council being a total Labour run council, when public money is used to make a substantial purchase from a union then eyebrows are going to be raised. For example, will this publicly-funded office become the base for future election campaigns on behalf of Labour Crewe and Nantwich?” demanded Lee, and the answer is No.
Only UKIP could get paranoid about that. And it gets worse. While UKIP’s small business spokesman tells “Fewer than one in ten British businesses trade with the EU, yet 100 per cent of them must comply with thousands of EU laws on employment, waste management, environmental regulations, product registration, health and safety, etc. This burden is destroying small businesses and helping destroy our economy”, Richard Lee’s firm Cube Surveys majors in, er, health and safety work!
That means the firm run by a UKIP councillor makes a significant amount of its money from the kinds of regulations that his own party says are “helping destroy our economy”. Cube Surveys also majors in environmental work, which means they take advantage of, well, environmental regulations, which the Kippers also puts into that economy-destroying category. Richard Lee is clearly a man of flexible principles.
And he’s got no room to whine about Crewe Town Council’s seats being 100% occupied by Labour councillors. The Town Council was elected; Minshull Vernon and Leighton parish council has difficulty getting enough volunteers to fill all its seats, and so Lee did not have to face election - he just got his nomination papers signed, and he was in!
UKIP - the party where you can face both ways on regulations, and whine about democracy when you haven’t had to face it. No surprise there, then.