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Andrew George MP taken to task by Penzance Chamber

posted Dec 10, 2010, 10:14 PM by Richard Cliffe
See previous news item concerning deputations to House of Commons to meet Norman Baker MP on the 15 Dec 10.

Mike Waters, Chair of Penzance Chamber of Commerce, wrote (see attached) to Andrew George MP on 7 Dec 10 asking to be included in the visit the MP has arranged for Penzance Town Council & Penzance Business Network to meet Norman Baker MP (Dept of Transport).  As the Ferry Link Project  (as approved) is vital to the business community and the delegation set on scuppering it he was not going to let it pass unchallenged.  Mike Waters stated “if there is to be a deputation of the business community to Mr Baker then the Chamber must be included”.  

The MP’s reply (see attached) was not very supportive.  He would ask the Minister but thought it unlikely he would agree at this late stage and invited Mike Waters to ask the two delegations attending if they would include him.  The MP claimed “I hope you will not mind if the Minister and I do not become drawn into an issue of local contention which you are clearly seeking to advance in this way.  I am determined that any meeting with the Minister should be focussed on the primary objective set out above.

Mike Water’s emailed reply (see attached) stated “We have no desire to draw the Minister into an issue of local contention as you claim in your letter, merely to ensure that the Minister is provided with the true facts of the case. By arranging for a minority group, purportedly representing local businesses, who have the sole objective of promoting an alternative scheme to that which has been developed with full consultation over many, many years it could be seen that their opinion is put above that of the majority.  

Subsequently, the Council of the Isles of Scilly came to the rescue and invited Mike Waters to join their delegation.

Comment.


Penzance Business Network and Option Pz were developments from the MP’s initiative kicked off on 1 Feb 2010.  With business groups overwhelmingly supporting Option A, and the opposition case weakened with no viable alternative plan,  objectors needed both a plan and a business group to advocate it.  Penzance Business Network has remained a small closed group with a narrow agenda and insignificant footprint within the Penzance business community.   Many will see their meeting with the Minister AS an embarrassment for the Town.



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Richard Cliffe,
Dec 10, 2010, 10:29 PM
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Richard Cliffe,
Dec 10, 2010, 10:29 PM
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Richard Cliffe,
Dec 10, 2010, 10:29 PM
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