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June 5, 2007 10:55 PM
By Maureen Rigg in Evening Gazette, June 5th 2007


Jun 5 2007

by Alan Little, Evening Gazette

I MUST correct a fundamental misconception in the letter from Anthony Bonner (Your Say, 25.5.07). Liberal Democrats did not stand for election as councillors to "grasp the reins of power" but to serve the people who voted for them.

We agreed, and stated in our manifesto prior to the election, that we would work constructively with all parties after the election.

Unfortunately, when the election results had shown that many people across the borough of Stockton-on-Tees had lost faith in the Labour party, the Labour leader said he was not interested in what "a handful" of Liberal Democrats had decided.

It seemed obvious to us he was not prepared to work constructively with us, so we felt we had no option but to pull out of the talks.

That decision has been supported by all the residents who have discussed it with us.

Liberal Democrats on Stockton Council are still prepared to work constructively with members of all parties to achieve the best possible outcomes for the people of Stockton. Already such co-operation is showing results in the provision of some local services. We look forward to many more such examples.

MAUREEN RIGG, Leader, Liberal Democrat Group, Stockton Council