Saturday, 30 October 2010
As you will be aware, the Comprehensive Spending Review was published last Wednesday which sets out Government spending over the next four years.
The Comprehensive Spending Review was catastrophic for local government - councils largely depend on grants from central government for their funding, and last week's announcement meant council funding will be cut by 27% between now and 2015.
As one of the poorest borough's in the country, Hackney will be disproportionately hit by the severe cuts that have been set out.
In the lead up to the chancellor’s announcement, savings of £26 million (6-7% of the total Council budget) had been identified - which meant Hackney Council could have coped for the next year without any reductions in frontline services.
However at this month's Full Council Mayor Jules Pipe told the meeting that we may be facing even worse government cuts than we thought in the coming year: “The detail behind last week’s government announcement suggests that the grant cuts aren’t spread across four years, but have been frontloaded to take out between £50 and £60million in the first year. This means a reduction of around 20 per cent in the first year, not the 7.25 per cent stated by the government. Unless there are further funding streams that are still to be revealed by the government to make up this shortfall, the council will be faced with having to make devastating decisions.
“Extra grant funding has been given to areas like ours in the past for good reason, but we will now see reductions in grant of more than twice the national average."
Mayor Pipe has declared that this level of cuts is Armageddon and he will fight these cuts and work with other poorer parts of the country to make sure Hackeny is not penalised for having more social needs.
The Mayor and Labour councillors will make every effort they can to minimise the effect of these cuts to our communities and the protection of frontline services will remain our absolute priority.
Are you concerned about the impact that the Coalition Government cuts are having on us locally in Stoke Newington? We want to hear from you.
Congratulations to Somerford and Shacklewell Estate in our ward for wimming the Best Estate Garden award in a London wide competition - Edible Estates.
Somerford and Shacklewell was recognised for the dedication residents have shown to improving communal areas and getting people involved in the project. Anyone who has walked through the estate recently will see first hand the fruit trees, raised beds and plots of land covered with sunflowers, beans and peas, nasturtiums and cabbages!
Well done to Alex, Hedvig, Robin and TRA Chair Yolanda and all the residents who got involved for this fantastic achievement. More about the award in the Evening Standard here.
At 2pm tomorrow in the old factory site on Shacklewell Road there will be a Hallowe'en themed fun day with facepainting, apple bobbing, pumpkin carving and lots more! It will also be a good opportunity to sign up and get involved with the Growing Club on the estate.
Tuesday, 26 October 2010
On Saturday we went along to the opening of Young Hackney Stoke Newington - a new centre for young people locally.
The centre was funded as part of the previous Labour Government's Myplace project - developing high quality youth centres in local neighbourhoods.
The centre in Stoke Newington is just off Howard Road on the Milton Gardens Estate and is currently open from Tuesday-Friday until 9pm with a range of activities from homework support, health and fitness, cooking projects and services provided by voluntary and community partners. The centre specialises in ITC provision and there is a brand new multi media suite.
It's a great new centre, designed and developed by young people, and we're keen to see young people from across the Stoke Newington neighbourhood get involved.
If you are a young person locally who wants to get more involved - come along to the Stoke Newington Youth Forum which is meeting tonight at 4.30 at 63 Clissold Road.
Sunday, 24 October 2010
The Hackney Design Awards celebrate great design in Hackney, and this year they include a "People's Choice" award. Voting closes tomorrow, but local residents have a final chance to judge and vote for their favourite project.
The shortlist is online here and includes several Stoke Newington buildings - the Stoke Newington Town Hall renovation (details here); Stoke Newington School which benefitted from Building Schools for the Future funding (details here) and the newly opened Young Hackney youth centre on Milton Gardens (details here)
There will be an awards ceremony in November where the results will be announced.
Tuesday, 19 October 2010
Hackney Council is currently consulting with local residents and businesses about the future of the one-way system in Stoke Newington.
Transport for London controls the main A10, Rectory Road and Manse Road, and Hackney Council has responsiblity for the side roads in the area. Some of the problems with the one-way system that residents have reported include speeding, rat running, congestion and difficulty in accessing shops on the High Street.
As a result, the Council is looking at options for managing traffic in the Stoke Newington area and would like to know your views on how the one-way system affects you at the moment, and proposals improving traffic and road safety issues in the area.
The consultation documents are online here and are available until Monday 10th January 2011.
There is also a drop in session today between 11am-2pm in Stoke Newington Library.
Thursday, 14 October 2010
The quarterly Stoke Newington Neighbourhood Forum is taking place tonight at 7pm in Stoke Newington Town Hall.
There are some important local issues on the agenda, in particular:
- Tackling prostitution
- Licensing issues along the A10
- The one way system consultation.
Tuesday, 12 October 2010
Living in Hackney, the Council’s Scrutiny Commission for housing, is reviewing tenant participation in the Borough, looking at how Hackney Homes engages residents in the decision-making which affects their area.
All tenants should by now have received a letter with a hard copy of the survey- if you would rather complete it electronically there are two versions, one for people who attend Tenant and Resident Associations (TRAs) (http://bit.ly/99lHSL) and those who don't currently engage in formal consultation events (http://bit.ly/90UT7X)
If you’re a Hackney Homes tenant please do respond as the results of this survey will help inform how Hackney Homes engages with tenants in the future. We go to local TRA meetings in our ward and are well aware that there is room for improvement – especially in empowering residents to hold Hackney Homes to account and in being given the resources to develop community projects on individual estates.
The results from the review will help to determine how Hackney Homes engages with residents in the future.
Monday, 11 October 2010
Two local residents have contacted us about two community art events that they're involved in which might be of interest:
- An art exhibition from Beeraahaar Sweet Combination celebrating local children and young people is on at Claudia Jones Organisation 6-8 Palatine Road on 26th-28th October
- Local resident Ernesto Leal has organised ‘East End Promise: A Story of Cultural migrants’ an exhibition on at 28 Redchurch Street until 24th October
Wednesday, 6 October 2010
Hackney recently launched the first publicly accessible electric vehicle charging point in Dalston.
Further charging points will be installed around the borough during 2010/11, and the Council is currently assessing sites where demand is expected to be highest.
If you would like to suggest a location for a new electric vehicle charging point please let us know and we will pass on your request to officers. Would Stoke Newington Central benefit from a charging point?
Monday, 4 October 2010
Volunteers are needed for the Olympic Games in London in 2012!
Applications are open until 27th October and the organisers are after people with specialist skills and also general 'Games Makers'. This is a great opportunity to get involved in the Olympics and help make the Games in London a success. All the details on how to apply are online here.
Don't forget to register for tickets if you're interested in attending events - the details are online here. Hackney councillors recently met with the representatives from the organising committee to stress the importance of affordable tickets for local Hackney residents, and more details about ticketing will be released in Spring 2011.
For local businesses - there are many opportunities to get involved, and all tender opportunities are online on the Compete For website. More info here.