13.1.16…..The Agenda for the 21st January Policy & Resources meeting was due to be uploaded at noon today with the report to committee included telling the world which of the two shortlisted King Alfred redevelopment contenders would be recommended to the Committee for decision (ratification in truth!) on the 21st.
So what on earth is going on?
According to Rob Starr, of the Starr Trust, (one of the contenders with Crest Nicholson), there have been a few dates for relaying the council decision to them which have then been repeatedly pushed back. He was expecting to be told by 4:30pm yesterday and was told he would not now know “until at least the 21st”.
This suggests a couple of things. One could expect that the differing political parties (3) sitting on P&R would be in discussion ahead of the 21st meeting and already have a vote organised to prevent a blowup on the day and a united front. Brighton & Hove City Council is on record as being terrified of a repeat of the Karis/Frank Gehry debacle and wishing to prevent a repeat. It is this that lays behind its extreme secrecy and refusal to consult with the public AT ALL. Is there some difference of views? Do Labour and the opposition parties not agree on who the developer should be, maybe?
Are there some unresolved issues or new information, second thoughts, which mean the actual decision on which one to recommend is not itself actually in place? Could the P&R item be taken off and the decision made at at future date instead? Or a decision taken at P&R to defer?