Council wants to be told how it is doing

HASTINGS Borough Council wants Observer readers to tell it what it should and should not be spending money on.

The local authority has already quizzed locals as part of its Big Conversation survey which helped shape this year’s council budget.

Now it wants to follow up on that by visiting shops, community groups and supermarkets to ask people what services they most value.

Council leader Jeremy Birch explained: “This time last year we knew we were faced with spending cuts so we asked local people where we should concentrate our spending, and which areas where people thought it might be possible to make some cuts.

“The feedback we had from this was invaluable, and helped us through the difficult budget-setting process we had to go through when the scale of the cuts became clear.

“One year on, we are going to ask the same people how they think we did, whether we got it right, and what priorities they think we should be concentrating on as we look ahead into the future.

“We have written to a number of local community groups asking to go back to speak to them.

“Deputy leader Jay Kramer and myself are more than willing to visit any local community organisation to hear their views so please contact us if you would like us to come along. And along with other councillors we plan to set up shop in local centres to talk to local people.

“We would be pleased to get emails from anyone who would like to comment on what we’ve done, and what we should be doing.”

Anyone who has a comment should email bigconversation@hastings.gov.uk.