YP Letters: Decision time for councils on fracking

From: Coun Mike Potter, Undercliffe, Pickering.

A fracking protest in Malton.
A fracking protest in Malton.

A STRONGLY Conservative-controlled Ryedale Council voted overwhelmingly to reject Third Energy’s application for fracking in Kirby Misperton after listening to many arguments for and against.

The vote was based on a deep concern about the risks from this industry to the environment, existing local tourism and agriculture, traffic, noise and light pollution, waste water, air pollution and many others. There was also a deep mistrust of the regulatory regime and promises of ‘Gold Standard Regulation’, with little evidence to back those claims. Incidentally, those are precisely the promises given in the US and Australia prior to the industrialisation of vast tracts of land and a host of proven problems.

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Most town and parish councils local to this site have also voted for bans or moratoriums on fracking. A significant majority of local councillors and residents have spent countless hours closely scrutinising this industry and found the risks greatly outweigh the benefits.

Now we must wait to see if NYCC councillors will similarly do their homework .

If, contrary to the highly paid lobbyists of industry and Government, the facts lead NYCC into also making the ‘wrong’ decision, I have no doubt the Government will call it in and change it, thus making a total mockery of democracy, their own Localism Act and their own climate change targets. A credible energy policy would be a good place to start.

Outcry over business rates

From: Ian Gill, MGG Developments Co Ltd, The Tiger Inn, Coneythorpe, Knaresborough.

WHILE Mario Draghi, president of the European Central Bank, increases production of ‘magic money’ to 80bn euro per month, in his determination to prevent deflation in Europe, his considerable abilities will not be required in North Yorkshire as Harrogate Borough Council is working hard to ensure that inflation is the order of the day.

As a small company, with four licensed premises in the Harrogate-controlled area, we have been notified that our business rates have increased by 12, 25, 43 and 53.5 per cent. I am unsure whether Harrogate Borough Council is acting on its own, or is simply taking orders from the Chancellor in his determination to rid the UK of small businesses in general.

I accept small businesses are a nuisance and it would be more efficient for the country if we all worked for large offshore conglomerates. Nonetheless, I must ask what has happened to the belief that small businesses create more jobs than any other?

Last year we contributed £325,000 in VAT payments and in the past 10 months have paid £152,000 PAYE.

Nothing new in sick notes

From: Mr N Elliott, Church Street, South Cave, Brough.

RE your recent article on soaring sickness rates. I well remember my father (the Rev JV Elliott) who was the first honorary chaplain at what is now Everthorpe prison asking one of the officers “Have you had your holidays?” The reply? “Yes, but I’ve still got a few sickies left!” This was in the 60s. Obviously, things don’t change.

Thank you for your help

From: ME Newbury, The Avenue, Kirklington, Bedale.

RECENTLY, I fell at home and was taken to the Friarage Hospital, Northallerton, where it was found necessary for me to have an operation. I was taken to James Cook Hospital, Middlesbrough. After a few days, I was taken to the Friary Hospital, Richmond. Now I am back at home and I think I am doing well.

I would like to thank all the people involved in my good care from the ambulance drivers to the domestic staff and all the other professions who put me back together again. My best wishes to you all.

Cash call

From: Peter Hyde, Kendale View, Driffield.

ONCE again, the North is neglected in the Budget (Tom Richmond, The Yorkshire Post, March 17). Where is our money for flood defences, Mr Osborne? The Chancellor puts white elephant schemes like HS2 before the desperate need of the North.

Key festival

From: David Treacher, Nelson Road, Hull.

MANY remember Christmas, but far fewer people remember Easter. Only the fact that they eat Easter eggs and have a day off work. But the truth is it is the most important period of the Christian year.

Banana split

From: Ken Cooke, Wheatley Road, Ilkley.

EU Leavers accuse Remainers of running Project Fear. Since day one of our joining the Common Market, the europhobes have run their own Project Fear, threatening us with the straight banana. Well, it’s been over 40 years now and bananas remain stubbornly curved. Am I right to believe that if we leave the EU we will finally get access to straight bananas?