Green Party Councillors called in the proposed changes – out-sourcing of the management of York’s allotments – back in May of 2017, saying that there needed to be further scrutiny of the proposal and wider consultation. We are pretty dissatisfied that it has taken until September before the matter came before Councillors for discussion.
At the call-in meeting last Monday, Councillor Kramm re-iterated that the Greens were not against the outsourcing of the management of the allotments in principle, even though this will lead to the redundancy of the Allotments Officer, but if the Council is going to go down this road then we need to ensure that the charity would have sufficient resources to do the job and that there has to be appropriate checks and balances if things go wrong.
What Members of the Call-In Scrutiny Committee agreed, was that there and not been sufficiently wide consultation. The two main documents had been seen by no-one other than the proposed trustees of the charity. This was not good enough, and Members accept Councillor Taylor’s proposal that the Business Plan and Governance Document must be made available on the Council’s website so that interested parties could comment on it, and that Allotment Secretaries be emailed these documents. Furthermore, all people on the waiting lists for allotments would be contacted directly for their views in the way that existing allotment holders had been consulted previously.
Members further requested that a free-of-charge allotment plot for Applefields School might be maintained for children with Special Educational Needs.
These points were then voted upon and unanimously agreed by all Members of the Scrutiny Call-In Committee.
The webcast of the full meeting is available here: