MK's stadium proposal was never given a fair hearing
OVER the past few weeks, the West Briton has given considerable coverage to Cornwall Council's refusal to support the Stadium for Cornwall project.
As an elected member of Cornwall Council, I am extremely saddened at how the whole issue has been mishandled by the authority.
The MK group believes strongly that local people have a right to the same good-quality facilities that other parts of the UK take for granted.
That should include provision for sporting excellence, and the council should not be afraid to take a lead on the delivery of key projects for Cornwall.
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At the actual meeting on the stadium, Mebyon Kernow were very critical of the report placed in front of elected members.
It was shockingly short on detail, it had little information about the pledged investment from private sector partners, it did not explain why further private-sector investment was problematic and it did not even explore what might be possible with governmental, grant or European funding.
That is why Mebyon Kernow moved the modified proposal that the council should investigate taking the lead in delivering a stadium for Cornwall, that there should be detailed scrutiny of any proposal brought forward and that a detailed report setting out the business case with full financial information be brought back to full council.
I considered this to be a sensible and straightforward proposal, but councillors voted it down by 55 votes to 46.
I find it unbelievable that councillors voted to throw out the proposal without even giving it a fair hearing, without investigating the details and costs and without considering what the sporting and economic benefits for Cornwall might be.
Sadly, politics got in the way. I understand the Conservative group even whipped their own members to oppose the stadium project.
For information, the 46 councillors who voted in favour of properly assessing the options were all five Mebyon Kernow councillors, the one Labour councillor, 17 Lib Dems, 13 independents and 10 Conservatives.
It was opposed by 26 Conservatives, 17 Lib Dems and 12 independents.
Seven members abstained: two were independents and five were Tories.