Council to face no confidence vote

Scarborough Town Hall
Scarborough Town Hall

A vote of no confidence in the leader of Scarborough Council and his cabinet will take place on June 26.

The motion, submitted to the council by UKIP councillors Sam Cross, Roxanne Murphy, Norman Murphy, John Dodds and independent Janet Jefferson, was handed into the council in April, but due to the local and general elections, it has been delayed until now.

It followed votes of no confidence in the council from Whitby and Filey town councils in leader Cllr Derek Bastiman and his cabinet.

It has not yet been revealed if Cllr Bastiman and the remaining seven cabinet members will be allowed to vote when the motion comes to the floor.

Speaking in April, Cllr Cross said: "People have had enough, we are hearing it on the doorstep, not just in Filey and Whitby but in Scarborough too.

"People are looking at decisions like the one to demolish the Futurist and asking 'what are they doing?'

"We've been using the phrase 'drain the swamp' and that's what we want to do.

"Our understanding is that this motion has to be heard at its own meeting in seven days, if not we have to take it to the chief executive.

"It is not a debate, it will just be a vote.

"We know the Conservatives have a majority so we are asking Conservative councillors to stay at home if they are afraid to vote against their leaders.

"We know we have the support of Labour and the Greens with this motion, I expect the cabinet can rely on the votes of its two independent members.

"It is time people stood up to be counted."

If the cabinet (Six Conservatives and two independents) is allowed to vote then the Conservatives hold a slim majority (plus the Conservative Mayor would break any tie) and should defeat the motion.

If not then the Conservatives would be left with 20 votes (assuming full turnout to the 10am vote and support). Labour, Green and UKIP combined would equal that 20 with motion co-sponsor Janet Jefferson (independent) giving the opposition the leader.

However, that would leave Cllr Vanda Inman (ind) who resigned from the Labour Party following the vote to demolish the Futurist and voted with the Conservatives to approve the demolition of the building.

The demolition was approved by one vote after two Tories rebelled, with Cllr Inman the only opposition member to vote in favour of knocking down the building. She could once again hold the deciding vote.

Losing the vote would not mean the current cabinet and leader would have to step down, though it would increase pressure from opposition groups that they do not have the faith of the council or the electorate.