STUART DAVENPORT District Councillor - Milton Village

Grants available for Community Projects
The District Council will be offering two grant schemes starting next month with £175,000 available to support the local community. In recent years local villages have succeeded in securing valuable funding from these grant pots.

 

The Capital Grants scheme and New Homes Bonus community grant scheme opens on 20 August and will run until 15 October for people to apply.

 

Workshops to give guidance on the grants and help people to apply for them will be offered 4-6pm on 8 August in Abingdon, 10 August in Faringdon and 15 August in Wantage. 

 

Individual or groups interested in applying for funding can book a place on an advice session by calling the district council on 01235 422644 or by emailing grants@southandvale.gov.uk. 

 

Council Tax
The thud of a council tax bill hitting the doormat in March is an annual reminder of the cost to every resident of the services we receive from our local authorities. This year, for a collection of reasons, the various bodies whose charges make up the bill have increased their levy.

 

Nobody wants to pay more council tax, and the Conservative groups who run the District and County Councils only raise taxes after being convinced important services will suffer otherwise. Instinctively we want to cut taxes, allowing residents to spend more of their own money.

 

At the District Council, this year’s increase of 4.3% council tax represents the first time residents have been asked to increase their contribution in seven years. This increase has been required in order to maintain the league-topping recycling service and investment in new leisure facilities.   

 

County Council Elections
04 May is polling day for elections to Oxfordshire County Council. I will be standing as the Conservative Party candidate for our area, hoping to continue to represent the village during a time of change at local government. My promise to those voting is that I will be an assiduous advocate for our area, being visible to those with concerns and voting for the benefit of our villages.  I have used my last two years as a councillor to fight again inappropriate development, something I will continue to do if elected to County Hall.

 

While local elections are about who represents you, it is also about which party runs your local council. In Oxfordshire the choice is between the Conservatives and the Labour Party.  Labour-run Oxford City Council has increased council tax to levels far exceeding the four surrounding District Councils. With this record we can expect higher council tax if they gain control of the County Council.

 

Planning Enforcement
After receiving planning permission, sites near the village are now being built and new residents moving in. There have been several reports of developers not adhering to the strict conditions imposed upon them by the Council. I have been working closely with enforcement offices to make sure any deviation from the approved scheme is quickly rectified.

 

Please do get in touch if you are unsure whether building work near you is being carried out with the correct planning consents.

Michael Murray District Councillor - Milton Heights

Michael Murray