Agenda item

Public Question Time

To answerpublicquestionsunder Council Procedure Rule10.The questionsmust be on matterswhich are relevanttothe functionsofthe Council, andshould not includestatements.


One supplementaryquestionfrom thequestioner will be allowed.


Up to 30 minutesisallocatedto PublicQuestionTime.



Questions asked in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 9 were as follows:


Questioner’s Name

Name of Councillor Responding


Ian Dickson – Gossops Green


I’ve come to ask a question about the Notice of Motion about cutting carbon emissions to zero by 2050. Climate change is the biggest issue facing us. I welcome the motion and congratulate Councillor Thomas for bringing the Motion to Council for discussion. I think 2050 is too far ahead and it should be cut to 2030 as a target date, there should be an annual audit review, join with other Councils to pressure the government to act more on climate change. Will the Council do these 3 things?  



Supplementary Question


The Council should look at this seriously and see if you can achieve a 2030 target date.


Councillor Lamb

(Leader of the Council)


The date was subject to a lot of discussion and 2030 was an option but upon looking into the detail and looking at current contracts and technology available if we pledged to complete by 2030 there was a high probability that legally we would not be able to deliver by that date within our current constraints. I don’t want to promise to do something that we are not going to deliver.  We are keen to have something that is obtainable. If the technology improves, there will be the opportunity to move at a faster pace then we will do that. We are not going to promise anything we can’t deliver.


Councillor Thomas

(Cabinet Member for Environmental Services and Sustainability)


Thank you Ian. You asked 2 other questions. One was about an annual audit. Whilst I would be very keen on that, it is not for me to be specifying that from my relative incomplete knowledge of the total workings of the council. Which is why I’ve referred this and urged the OSC to set up a scrutiny panel to look at the whole thing.  I hope that when they report some sort of annual review audit would be part of that.  As far as pressuring government is concerned I welcome the current Prime Minister talking about 2050 whereas the Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was talking about having major reductions by 2030.


Jeremy Peck – Bewbush


I also believe 2030 should be a target and believe 2050 is a bit complacent. In view of that I would suggest that the Fastway bus is not fit for purpose and councils should be thinking of a tramway to replace it which would not be throwing out fumes.


Councillor Sharma

(Mayor of Crawley)


The Fastway was a West Sussex County Council matter Jeremy, unfortunately.

Robin Burnham – Bewbush


I think the Council should aim to be the greenest Council in the country. Do you agree?

Councillor Lamb

(Leader of the Council)


Thank you Robin. Yes we certainly want to aim to do that. The practicality of how to deliver that is the problem. We are here to make a plan that is deliverable to get this town green as quickly as possible.


David Gonzalez – Pound Hill


I am currently undergoing my International Citizen Service and with that I’m carrying out a survey for Friends of Goffs Park. I notice that the Council is about to open a consultation on its Forward Plan for the town. Is this the right time to look at the whole issue of facilities at Goffs Park including those for the model railway?

Councillor Mullins

(Cabinet Member for Wellbeing)


We have been canvassed by the Friends of Goffs Park and I have empathy for the issues that are raised.  Finances always pose issues but the practicalities of the facilities that are missing in the park are also very real.  I understand the plight of the model railway but it isn’t just that. When there are festivals in the park for example the toilets are far away. I have asked officers to work up a business plan for Goffs Park. It will require consultation and it will need to bring in finance and resources in a similar way to Tilgate.


Dave Hathaway – Three Bridges Forum


I support the motion Councillor Thomas is putting forward this evening. My question concerns electric vehicle charging points. Can Crawley Borough Council actually be the co-ordinating organisation to co-ordinate the funding streams that are bound to be coming forward now to put in the infrastructure for all the electric vehicles that are going to be hitting Crawley? Please say to yourselves, we are going to be co-ordinating the installation of 2000 electric charging points.

Councillor P Smith

(Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development)


Thank you Dave for your question. We are able to release a new Transport Strategy for the town which will be going to public consultation later in the year. It does include the provision of electric vehicle charging points, car pools, more improvements to sustainable transport etc. We also have the Local Plan that has just gone out for consultation and I would urge you to submit comments on that regarding electric vehicles. We also have a planning application gone in for the Moka site and they are planning to put in electric charging points there as well so we are starting work on it. The more support we receive from residents the better and any ideas please send them in.  



In line with the constitution, the Mayor also rejected another separate question raised by a member of the public, as the question ‘either did not or was not related to the matters which was relevant to the functions of the Council,’ or the question related to an individual’s case that would ‘disclose personal information’.