New waste calendars for a third of York households

The Council is writing to around a third of all households in York to let them know that their recycling collection day will change from the 1st of April 2017.

Households affected by the changes can expect to receive a new rubbish and recycling calendar in the post. The Council is also providing free boxes, lids and nets to households affected by the change. The changes will enable the roll out of recycling collections to rural areas of the city that don’t currently have them, as well as help to make the waste service more efficient.

As a result of the review collection times will vary, so the Council is reminding all households that they must present their household waste and recycling on the kerbside by 7am on the morning of their collection.

Rubbish (grey bin/black bags) and garden waste (green bin) collections are not affected by the changes.

More information is available online at This includes a list of all households affected by the change.

Council budget: Lib Dems protecting frontline services


Liberal Democrat budget plans announced today will help protect local frontline services in the face of huge government cuts.

Key proposals include:

  • Doubling long-term investment in roads and footpaths to £20million
  • More money for gulley cleaning, gritting and litter bins
  • Supporting renewable energy to make York the Greenest City in the North
  • More support for mental health services and care for the elderly
  • Keeping your council tax one of the lowest in the country

The proposals will see investment in roads and footpaths doubled to £20million over the next 5 years alongside new litter bins, extra gulley cleaning and gritting. The plans will mean extra investment in mental health services, libraries, and funding for renewable energy to help York become the Greenest City in the North. The proposals also include a new local-area approach to tackling poverty.

The budget comes in the face of unprecedented cuts by the Conservative Government. York’s grant will be slashed by over 50% (£6.3million) next year, and between 2016 and 2020 £21.7million of savings are being made. This comes at the same time as growing cost pressures due to an ageing population and the national financial crisis in social care and the NHS.

The Council will therefore use the Government’s 3% social care precept to fund services to elderly and vulnerable people in York. Added to this will be a 0.7% increase in general Council Tax.

This balance will help us to protect the frontline services that matter to you whilst ensuring York continues to have one of the lowest council tax rates in the country.

Cllr Keith Aspden, Liberal Democrat Group Leader and Deputy Leader of City of York Council, commented:

“Liberal Democrat councillors, as part of the joint executive, are working hard to protect and invest in crucial frontline services across York. Next year we are putting additional money into areas such as road repairs and pothole prevention, gulley cleaning, litter bins and protecting areas such as local community ward budgets and services to vulnerable children and adults.

“This effort comes despite unprecedented national cuts, which will see the central grant given to York all but wiped out by 2020. The Conservative Government is starving local councils of funding. However, by making savings in areas such as senior management costs and taking a balanced approach to Council Tax we are working to protect the frontline services that matter most in your area.”

Full details of the budget will be published here:

The full budget report will be considered by the Executive at its meeting on 9 February. Full Council will debate the budget and have final approval on 23 Feb.

Autumn Statement – Conservatives Fail to Deal With NHS Blackhole


Autumn Statement – Conservatives Fail To Deal With NHS Blackhole

This week’s autumn statement shows a Brexit blackhole at the centre of government finance. Parliament has heard that hundreds of billions will be taken out of the economy just when we need it most.

Liberal Democrats across our area and the country have been pushing the government to put their money where their mouth – with an immediate £4 billion cash injection to stop the impending winter NHS funding crisis. See our video here!

Commenting on the Autumn Statement, Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron said:

“Figures forecast a rise in unemployment and a fall in living standards.

“We are seeing a drop in tax receipts of £8.2 billion over the next two years alone. That’s enough to fund over 330,000 nurses. In response the Chancellor offered nothing but reheated headlines and recycled announcements.

“He and his Government are not competent to deal with the challenges ahead. They are going to hit people in the pocket through their hapless handling of Brexit, and Labour can offer no opposition, having backed them on Brexit.

“Yet, the Liberal Democrats have consistently campaigned for more funding for the NHS as we are on the edge of another winter crisis and our health service is at breaking point but yet the government has turned a deaf ear to these calls.

“Sadly now patients will pay the price. There is also nothing for public sector workers, our doctors, teachers and armed forces, who deserve a proper pay rise.”

Annual Waste Collection Calendars

Cllr-Ann-Reid-Green-BinsIt has come to that time of year when the delivery of the waste collection calendars is being undertaken. Deliveries will start on Monday 3 October and will be completed by Sunday 23 October.  The calendars also contain information about the final garden waste collections of the year and Christmas collections. The calendars will be available next week to download via the refuse look up tool on the website

Liberal Democrats – as part of the Joint Executive running York – reintroduced 2 green bin collections over the winter. We are now pushing on with our One Planet York programme as we aim to boost recycling. As part of this, the council is encouraging everyone to sign up to the new One Planet York Waste App  (more information can be found at: to get bin collection notifications direct to your smartphone.

Changes to street cleansing schedules

Following cuts to local funding by the government, the council is looking at ways to best allocate resources, as part of this the schedules of street cleansing have been reviewed using knowledge of frontline employees and local knowledge. This has helped to identify work that is definitely needed and reduce work that was undertaken due to it always being done prior to the rescheduling.

As a result of this for 6 months, beginning in August 2016, there will be a trial period testing the new street cleansing schedules. If you have any feedback during the 6 months please email:

For more information on the schedule for Dringhouses and Woodthorpe, go to:

Yorkshire Marathon Road Closure

The Yorkshire Marathon will be taking place on Sunday 9th October starting at 9:30am. The route will start and finish at the University of York and complete a loop through York City Centre, Stockton on the Forest, Upper Helmsley, Sand Hutton, Gate Helmsley, Stamford Bridge, Dunnington, Holtby, Murton and Osbaldwick.

Full information on road closures and the route can be found by clicking this link:Yorkshire Marathon Road Closure Poster

Over £1 million allocated for local York projects

Cllr Stephen Fenton at Chapman's Pond in Dringhouses where local funding has supported a Volunteer Bailiff Scheme to protect and enhance the popular local pond

Cllr Stephen Fenton at Chapman’s Pond in Dringhouses where local funding has supported a Volunteer Bailiff Scheme to protect and enhance the popular local pond

Neighbourhood projects and ways to spend local budgets are among the topics of discussion at a number of Ward Committee meetings scheduled to take place this summer.

Last year the Executive re-established Ward Committees and devolved nearly £1million of funding locally. Over the last 12 months these funds have been allocated to all York wards, to spend on local priorities which benefit residents living within the ward boundaries.

Ward Committee meetings are open to all residents and give the chance to make decisions on local budgets, learn about different projects, solve local issues and share ideas. It is also an ideal opportunity to meet key neighbourhood partners such as the police and find out about volunteering opportunities, all of which help strengthen communities and help shape a better place to live.

Local groups and organisations are always welcome to attend to find out more about accessing ward funding to further their initiatives for the benefit of local people.

Ward Committee meetings take a variety of different formats, many of which are fun and informal. At times they form part of a bigger event such as recent summer fair events at Hempland Primary School and Heworth Without, while over 100 people went to the July Micklegate Ward meeting at Scarcroft School, which focussed on education planning in the local area. In Fishergate, more than 400 local people enjoyed music, community group stalls, a climbing wall and play area and a chance to talk with councillors at the ward summer event at Millennium Green.

A number of successful projects have already been allocated ward funding based on local requests. These include installing community defibrillators in the phone box in Strensall and at Heworth Without Community Centre, providing new furnishings at St Paul’s Church, Holgate to help transform the community space, provision of new fencing at Copmanthorpe Youth Club, grants to Friends of Glen Gardens in Heworth and Acomb Timebank, improvements to Fulford Scout Hut, and the purchasing of 30 new litter pickers in Westfield. Ward Committee budgets are also being used by local communities to fund road, cycle and footpath schemes, streetlights, notice boards as well as litter and salt bins.

Cllr Keith Aspden, Deputy Leader of City of York Council and Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group said:“By re-establishing Ward Committees we have started the process of devolving funding and decision-making to local residents and community groups. The £1million pot has been used by wards across the city to fund lots of great projects for residents and community groups. 

“In the coming months we’d love even more people to have their say and get involved with local matters. Ward Committee meetings help ensure that the ward’s priorities reflect what matters to local residents and helps build vibrant, strong communities.”

Planned Ward Committee meetings this summer will be taking place at:

·         Clifton, 23 August at 6.30pm, Burton Stone Community Centre (part of a family community event to help redecorate the youth club)

·         Rural West, 23 August at 7pm, Manor School

·         Fulford and Heslington, 7 September from 6.30pm to 8.30pm, Heslington Church

Dates for all Ward Committee meetings will appear on and local posters as soon as they are scheduled.

Details of the Local Plan will also be available at the meetings, with information boards on display and feedback questionnaires available to enable residents to have their say. Local Plan drop-in events, with council officers present to answer questions and talk about the Plan, are planned throughout August at Osbaldwick Sports Centre, Dunnington Reading Room, York Sport, Acomb Explore, Tesco store at Tadcaster Road and Oaken Grove Community Centre. Sessions take place from 3pm to 7.30pm and more information can be found at

For more information about Ward Committee meetings, events and projects in receipt of ward funds visit or email

Residents can also have their say at where views are welcomed on the Local Plan, the Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategy and equipment for play areas.

Lib Dems campaign against £455 million housing bombshell

cllr-stephen-fentonLocal Liberal Democrats have launched a campaign against the undermining of council housing by Central Government which could cost York £455 million.  

The Conservative Government, under the recently passed Housing and Planning Act, will force higher-value council homes in York to be sold-off in order to fund national policies. Research from the charity Shelter estimates that 1,432 houses in York (18.3% of the total stock) could be sold under this policy with the majority of the sale receipts being passed to the Government.  

Earlier this year, City of York Council officers said the sell-off and other national reforms could mean income for the authority will over the next 30 years “at best be reduced by £340m, and at worst £455m…..(and as a result) It is likely that any future building programme for new council homes will need to be significantly reduced or ended completely”.  

York Lib Dems are calling on the recently appointed Housing Minister, Gavin Barwell MP, to rethink the plans, and have launched a petition which can be found at: In 2011, Liberal Democrats in York ensured the building of the first council houses for two decades and will continue to argue that there is a future for social housing going forward.  

Cllr Stephen Fenton (pictured), Liberal Democrat Councillor for Dringhouses & Woodthorpe, said:  

“The Conservative Government is intent on destroying social housing. Over 1,000 homes could be sold-off in York under these reforms, without the guarantee of building new ones to replace them. This will hit people on waiting lists, in desperate need of a home. 

“The reforms could also cripple the council’s finances. As council officers warned earlier this year, this could make building new homes practically impossible as well as make looking after existing homes harder and harder in the coming years. 

“Liberal Democrats believe that access to decent and affordable housing is a fundamental right. We are calling on the newly appointed Conservative Housing Minister to rethink the plans and protect council housing in York. We have launched an online petition at: 

“We will continue to fight to get the best outcome possible for the city. Tenants will want to know what the impact of Government policy will be so that they are fully informed on how future finances could look. As Lib Dem councillors, we believe that any possible changes resulting from this in the way that council housing is managed in York should only go forward with the agreement of tenants.”

Lib Dems call for funding guarantees for York

Tom Brake EU Launch

Liberal Democrats are calling on the Government to guarantee that York will still receive millions in EU funding and that the positive contribution EU citizens living in the city make is recognised.


The Lib Dems will move a motion at next week’s Full Council saying the Government should ensure that York and Yorkshire receives investment at least equal to that planned to be provided by EU programmes. Between now and 2020, the region will directly receive £661m from European programmes to support small businesses, help residents find work, and support farmers and rural communities.


The motion says that in future negotiations, the UK’s vital trading relationship with the EU should be protected and the Government should put in place a support package to help local businesses deal with the short-term economic shock and the transition to the UK’s new relationship with the EU. The Lib Dems are also calling for the rights of the 5,000 plus EU citizens currently working and living in the city to be protected.


Cllr Keith Aspden, Liberal Democrat Group Leader and Deputy Leader of the Council who will move the motion, commented:


“It is clear that following the referendum there are many unanswered questions of crucial importance to local residents and businesses. With the idea of leaving the EU to ‘take back control’ so ill-defined, it is vital that elected members at all levels in our city make clear their demands for a negotiating position that promotes and protects the interests of York.


“Key issues for us in York include the £661m Yorkshire receives directly from EU programmes as well as the individual funding given to support our universities and other projects in education, science and the environment. On top of this, are the crucial trade links which many local businesses rely on and the status of the EU nationals who have made York their home.


“York Teaching Hospital NHS Trust alone employs more than 250 staff from EU member countries; as it has looked to Europe to address staffing and skills shortages in recent years. The contribution these and other EU nationals make to our city should be recognised by Theresa May and their rights must be protected going forward.”


Cllr Aspden will move the following motion at next Thursday’s Full Council (6:30pm in York’s Guildhall)


York and the impact of Brexit


Council notes:

  • The result of the EU referendum
  • That 58% of those who voted in York voted for the UK to remain a member of the EU
  • That York is a tolerant and inclusive city where the contribution of all citizens (including nationals of other EU countries living here) is recognised and appreciated
  • York residents have benefited from the training, education and employment opportunities offered by EU membership
  • Yorkshire is one of the biggest beneficiaries of EU regional funding, which will include before 2020:

– £345m to support small businesses and create jobs (European Regional Development Fund)

– £286m to get unemployed people back into work (European Social Fund)

– £19.7m to support farmers and rural communities (European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development)


Council believes:

  • Many questions vital to the local interest now need answering, including the likely impact on York’s economy, the future of EU funding programmes that benefit York, and the future of the EU citizens who have made York their home
  • With the Brexit proposition of ‘taking control’ so ill-defined, it is vital that elected members at all levels and other interested parties make clear their demands for a Brexit negotiating position that promotes and protects the interests of the people they represent.

Council resolves to write to the Government saying that:

  • The Government should ensure that York and Yorkshire receives investment at least equal to that planned to be provided by EU programmes
  • In future negotiations, the UK’s vital trading relationship with the EU should be protected as far as possible alongside environmental standards and legislation supporting workers’ rights
  • The Government should work with regional LEPs and other partners to put in place a support package to help businesses deal with the short-term economic shock and the transition to the UK’s new relationship with the EU
  • The Government should re-affirm its commitment to funding key projects in the region including York Central, HS2 and Transpennine electrification

The rights of EU citizens currently working and living in the city should be protected.