King’s Lynn committee backed to continue role after elections

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Members of a committee set up to examine issues specific to Lynn have called for extra powers to be given to them after next month’s elections.

The King’s Lynn Area Consultative Committee was set up as a trial 18 months ago in a bid to provide more local influence on issues in the areas which are not served by either a town or parish council.

A proposal that the committee should continue to operate during the four year period from May 1 was backed by West Norfolk Council’s cabinet on Tuesday.

A final decision on its future still has to be made by the full council when it meets later this month.

But the committee’s chairman Andy Tyler believes the group has made an important contribution to town affairs.

He told the meeting: “I certainly have found it useful, rewarding and interesting to be involved in that committee up to now.

“Attendances have been good. Interest has been good and I hope in the future the committee will continue and develop.”

The body was established in September 2013 in response to calls for greater representation in the unparished areas of Lynn.

Since then, its members have met on a quarterly basis to debate issues related to the town.

A sub-group dedicated to looking at planning applications has also been set up.

When the committee first met, some councillors hoped the move might be a first step towards the revival of a full town council for Lynn.

Mr Tyler said that hope still remained, but some members were also keen in the short term to ensure the committee had some influence over special expenses.

They are the monies which are used to pay for work done by the borough council that would normally be completed by parish authorities.

He added: “I take the view, and others did too, that should be done in a constructive way.”

Council leader Nick Daubney said he backed the committee continuing its work after the elections.

He added: “The general feedback I’ve had is it has been an entirely constructive committee with cross-party support and has fed its opinions into the various democratic processes.

“My thought is it should continue to operate after May.

“I think you make very good points about how it could evolve which, after May, can be considered.”