Agenda item

Councillors' Question Time (continued)


Councillor Crow to the Leader of the Council

Supplementary –


I thank the Leader for his answer and he mentioned he had previously been appointed to the Cabinet Member role for Public Protection and Community Engagement. Furthermore he mentioned when Councillor Lamb was Leader there was a Cabinet of 7 members (and for some time 6 members). My question is, if the previous Leader was able to manage with 6, and 7 members, why is there a need for 8?


Councillor Jones, Leader of the Council




I was a member of Councillor Lamb’s Cabinet in the past and I believe that Cabinet was fit for the task it was given.  However, things in our borough change and we need to change in order to respond to those challenges.  I believe that public safety and anti-social behaviour are becoming increasingly concerning for the public and we need to respond. I have chosen not to appoint to the Public Protection portfolio until the election.

Councillor Ali to the Cabinet Member for Community Engagement and Culture


I would like to thank you for providing the information published but whilst sitting here I have just calculated the cost for the whole of the Winter Warmer project. I have calculated it costs approximately £303 per visit. There were quite a few of these sessions of which I visited and unfortunately there weren’t many people in attendance. Is it the best use of tax payers’ money with 59 sessions and £303 per visit?









Supplementary –

The data provided does not say there were sessions provided in Pound Hill or Maidenbower.  However, my supplementary is that most people went to the Broadfield community centre, and I visited this a few times.  But just across the road is Broadfield library and I wondered was there a collaboration with WSCC to use this or any discussion regarding a winter warmer session there?


Councillor S Mullins, Cabinet Member for Community Engagement and Culture


We are in the middle of a cost of living, food and energy crisis and this isn’t just for those on low incomes. There are lots of people who are struggling and we looked at what the council could do to help and we needed to do act quickly, which is what lots of other councils did around the country. There are areas of deprivation across the town and I’m amazed at the response we received for support to ensure there was some kind of provision in every area of the town.  The uptake wasn’t huge as sometimes it is hard to admit when you need help but it was a great initiative and the council did the right thing in supporting the community.




I visited the Broadfield community centre and did a radio broadcast from there.  I then visited Broadfield library to enquire if the library would be running a warm hub and the facilities could be used. Unfortunately, I was informed the library would not be running a warm hub and WSCC would have its own scheme in due course if it would be considered necessary.   Broadfield library was also going to be closed the week after Christmas for a refurb.


Councillor Brenda Burgess to the Cabinet Member for Community Engagement and Culture


I attended Crawley Question Time the other week and there was a lot of discussion about young people and there was concern that we have a Youth Council but unfortunately there was no representation so I’d just wondered how we can engage with the Youth Council and get them interested in what we do, could we have a report about what they’ve been doing, or know about the Youth Mayor’s events. How do we engage more with them?


Councillor Jones, Leader of the Council




We did invite a representative from the Youth Council to be on the Crawley Question Time Panel but unfortunately, they sent their apologies at late notice.  However we would continue to include young people in the future. Probably your average teenager does not want to sit in a room of sexagenarians and septuagenarians discussing planning issues so there is an issue about engagement.


Councillor S Mullins, Cabinet Member for Community Engagement and Culture


During the summer we had the elections to the Youth Council and the first meeting of their council took place in the new Town Hall a few weeks ago.  They are passionate about the issues that are important to them.  I would encourage all councillors to find out more about the Youth Council.


Councillor Jaggard to the Cabinet Member for Leisure and Wellbeing


I’ve been contacted by an elderly resident who attends the Pilates class at K2 Crawley on a Friday. The class costs £3.30 which is billed automatically to their bank account. If there is an event in the main hall, the class is moved into the studio.  The resident has found out that when this change of venue is made by K2 Crawley, the charge increases to £7.00 which is over double and apparently is because the studio is classed a premium room.  What do you as Cabinet member think of this charge and do you think it’s acceptable?


Can I just add that the election count is on a Friday and can we ensure that all residents are not charged double.


Councillor C Mullins, Cabinet Member for Leisure and Wellbeing


I’m surprised it’s happening. It hasn’t come to me as a complaint.  If you can send me an email with further details, I’ll take it up with the officer who manages the contract.

Councillor Lanzer to the Leader of the Council


The last Full Council was on 22 February and I’ll refer to 5 questions that were tabled briefly.

Councillor Hellier asked a question on fly tipping, waste and fines – received a response today (29 March).

Councillor Piggott asked a question on a searchable database for tree preservation orders. Has yet to receive a response 35 days later.

I asked a question to Councillor Jhans on the High Weald Outstanding Area of Natural Beauty and received a response this Tuesday (28 March).

Councillor Burrett asked Councillor C Mullins about the artificial cricket pitch and received a response this Monday (27 March).

Councillor Jaggard asked Councillor C Mullins about the Maidenbower community centre. Has yet to receive a response.

There are 5 questions, 2 of which are still outstanding and 3 of which the responses were just prior to Full Council. 

What are your thoughts as to the response time for such important public questions?


Councillor Jones, Leader of the Council


Thank you for your question.  It is very difficult depending on the complexity of the question and the need to complete the necessary research.  Clearly some time has passed and I will ask the Chief Executive and ensure that those questions that have not been answered are done so as a matter of urgency.

We can try and work out a management system so questions that come through Full Council are maintained.  I would reiterate to all members that if you have asked a question at Full Council and you feel you haven’t received an answer that you come to me, rather than wait for the next Full Council meeting. Please let me know if you are outstanding on any information.


Councillor Mwagale to the Leader of the Council


Have we got any signed up tenants for the top floors of the new town hall?

Councillor Jones, Leader of the Council



Thank you for your question.  It is difficult to provide detailed information as there is still commercial sensitivity surrounding the information. However we have significant interest with one organisation wanting to sign imminently and we are actively pursuing marketing opportunities.