Assembly’s O’Connell failed to comment on Purley Way report

The man once labelled as “Britain’s most over-paid local councillor” has come under fire for failing to serve his constituents in Croydon and Sutton and not managing to register any comments in a public consultation held by Transport for London.

Steve O'Connell: £73,000 a year for doing very little

Steve O’Connell: £73,000 a year for doing very little

Steve O’Connell has been pocketing a much-reduced wedge of public cash since the Tories lost control of Croydon Town Hall 18 months ago.

But the local councillor for Kenley ward who is also the Conservative candidate for Croydon and Sutton at next year’s London Assembly elections, still receives nearly £73,000 per year in combined “allowances” from City Hall and Croydon Council.

Over a full four-year term at City Hall, former mortgage salesman O’Connell is paid at least £220,000 to represent the people of the two south London boroughs.

Yet when TfL conducted its public consultation on proposals for Fiveways junction earlier this year – an £85 million scheme which will affect thousands of residents living along the A232 and A23 in Croydon and in Sutton – O’Connell couldn’t be bothered to submit even a single sentence to represent his constituents’ interests.

O’Connell’s failure to lodge any comment with TfL came to light last week, when the preliminary report was published. The report details the various observations and objections from a range of elected officials and other bodies, from Waddon ward’s Labour councillors, from the Croydon Green Party, and from the LibDem-controlled Sutton Council.

But from our Conservative London Assembly Member? Not a peep.

This may be because O’Connell is thoroughly biased in favour of the interests of big business, having previously announced in session at City Hall that he wants more roads built to “attract the Surrey wallet-share” to visit the £1 billion Hammersfield supermall, whenever it is finally built.

O’Connell is not the only Croydon Conservative politician to fail to participate in this latest  consultation: neither Chris Philp, the new MP for the affected Croydon South constituency, nor his useless predecessor, Tricky Dicky Ottaway, could be bothered to serve the interests of the residents whose homes and businesses could be blighted by the proposed Boris Flyover.

“Some Waddon residents have expressed concern that their MP and Assembly Member have not spoken up against a proposal from TfL that would see a sizeable part of Duppas Hill Park lost to a new flyover,” said Robert Canning, one of Labour’s councillors for the ward.

“The Waddon councillors hope that they will both back our campaign to protect Duppas Hill Park and the Waddon Hotel.”

Canning is seeking comments on the proposals and report, which he will use in a submission to TfL. His email address is: robert.canning@croydon.gov.uk.

O’Connell will probably be too busy checking his bank balance to contribute. But rest assured – he’ll be in touch with Croydon and Sutton residents soon enough, when he needs their votes to ensure he receives another £220,000 with another waste-of-space stint as a London Assembly Member. Outstanding value for public money…

To read the TfL Fiveways report in full, click here

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This entry was posted in 2016 London elections, Andrew Pelling, Boris Johnson, Joy Prince, Kenley, London Assembly, London-wide issues, Mayor of London, Purley Way, Robert Canning, Steve O'Connell, Waddon and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Assembly’s O’Connell failed to comment on Purley Way report

  1. I have just written to Robert Canning.I am not sure that my submission to the EAC parlaimentary inquiry has ever appeared here. For info:
    http://data.parliament.uk/writtenevidence/committeeevidence.svc/evidencedocument/Environmental%20Audit/Action%20on%20air%20quality/written/9765.html
    It is particularly relevant to primary school children near busy roads and COGNITIVE DEFICITS.Findings ever more repeated,world-wide,since the date of that submission.

  2. Steve O’Connell owes the people of Croydon and Sutton an explanation as to what he actually does for the £55,161 we pay him to turn up to the London Assembly. According to his profile on that organisation’s website, his current responsibilities include the following:

    – Deputy Chair of the Planning Committee
    – Member of the Confirmation Hearings Committee
    – Member of the Environment Committee
    – Member of the Housing Committee
    – Member of Transport Committee

    With one exception, all of those roles are in some way linked to the plans for the Purley Way. So why hasn’t Steve bothered to say anything about them? Asleep at the wheel? Bone idle? Disorganised? Careless? Too busy with his other jobs?

    We deserve better.

  3. davidjl2014 says:

    This is an utter disgrace. He’s just taking the p**s.

  4. veeanne2015 says:

    According to the Council website, Cllr. O’Connell, as well as being a Kenley Councillor, is Shadow Cabinet Member for Communities, Safety and Justice and is also on the Licensing Committee, Croydon Congress: Safer Croydon Partnership, and Croydon Congress: Stronger Communities Board.
    Not surprising then that he hasn’t got time for Consultations on what might happen to a park and roads in Waddon !

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