Jamie Wake 2014 Independent Candidate for Whitley ward in the Reading Local Elections
  • scissors
    May 4th, 2014jamiewakerdgEight to get Straight, kennet island

    parking on kennet islandBeing a resident of Kennet Island, I share the residents frustrations – especially when it comes to the Parking Management and its Enforcement on Kennet Island.  Following consultation with residents, I developed my ‘Eight to get Straight’ on Kennet Island with Improved Parking Management being top of the list.

    Historically, there have always been issues with parking on Kennet Island.  There are simply not enough parking spaces available for the number of residents that live here.  This issue has been acknowledged by St James who have added further spaces in later phases of the development.  The parking situation has not been helped by the introduction of Parking Enforcement Companies.  The first, PCM, clamped vehicles in their spaces and even attempted to clamp supermarket delivery vehicle and we’re told attempted to clamp an ambulance!  Their threatening behaviour forced residents to call police on occasions and on one night, a group of residents attempted to block the clamper in.  Their customer service was poor and in many cases, residents clamped by mistake had to pay PCM the release fee and advised to appeal afterwards.

    Of course these stories reached the local press and the development became known as ‘Clampit Island’

    Kennet Islanders marooned by parking clampers

    Kennet Island parking row

    Support grows to fight ‘barmy’ car parking rule

    Clamped – but I had a permit

    Extra spaces should ease parking woes

    I was proud to be chair of the residents association at the time and we successfully had PCM removed from Kennet Island although they were replaced by UKPC who issues tickets.  UKPC decided to leave Kennet Island this year (Hallmark inform me that this was following ‘…a serious offence…’) and Hallmark replaced them with PCM without consultation with residents.  A petition has been launched to challenge this decision but we fear that this will be ignored by Hallmark.  After all, they manage to park in the visitors bays on Whale Avenue all day without a ticket.  Seems they have one rule for them and one rule for residents.

    Other issues with Parking on Kennet Island include the threat of a ban on commercial vehicles on Kennet Island – even if they were parked in a residents own parking bay.  This again was successfully challenged.

    Whilst UKPC were contracted, replacement and/or additional permits were charged at £5 whilst Hallmark were only charged 50p by UKPC.  Upon questioning, Pauline Southam of Hallmark insisted that the difference of £4.50 was deposited back in the developments Service Charge as income – even though there is not an entry on the service charge statements to verify this.  This is still being chased.

    PCM Park in residents bay for an hourTo give an example of PCM’s poor service, the PCM employee parked in a residents space today preventing the resident to be able to park in their own bay for an hour! A resident sent me the image to contact Hallmark and St James.

    As you can see, the current parking enforcement needs an overhaul.  That’s why its one of my ‘Eight to get Straight’ on Kennet Island.

    I will ensure that any appointed contractor by Hallmark/St James offers the residents of Kennet Island fairness, consistency and transparency.  PCM’s website state that there is potential client revenue generation from their appointment and I believe that any income generated from their appointment (or any other company) such as through the issuing of permits and any commissioned earnt should be accounted for and clearly displayed on the service charge statement and returned to residents through their service charge.

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  • scissors
    April 22nd, 2014jamiewakerdgEight to get Straight

    As a resident intending to stand as an independent candidate in the forthcoming Reading Borough Council local elections, my manifesto is not decided by a local/national political party.  I believe that it should be decided by the local residents – after all, local elections are about the local area where local residents live.  If elected on 22nd May to represent Whitley, being independent I won’t be ‘whipped’.  Being ‘whipped’ means that the respective party groups usually decide in advance how every member will vote. By having an independent councillor you’ll have a councillor who actually cares about the local needs of their residents and who will vote according to the local needs of their residents.  The residents of Kennet Island were surveyed and their needs have formed my ‘Eight to get Straight’ on Kennet Island:

    1. Improved Parking Management
      Parking and it’s control has always been a focal topic on Kennet Island.  I will ensure any appointed contractor offers fairness, consistency and transparency.  Any income generated from their appointment such as through the issuing of permits and any commissioned earnt should be accounted for, itemised on Service Charge Statements and returned to residents through their service charge.
    2. Service Charge
      Residents are concerned about the increasing service charge.  I will ensure that service charges are fair, accurate and offer residents value for money. I will propose that the management agent for the developer issues an easy-to-understand annual breakdown of how residents’ money is being spent and why certain contractors are appointed. I will also ask that they review excessive charges such as the £350 fee to issue a service charge statement if a resident decides to move.
    3. Faster Broadband
      I will continue lobbying for Superfast broadband for residents experiencing slow speeds and unable to obtain fibre broadband. SAY NO 2 GO SLOW!
    4. Safer Streets
      I will work with police and neigbourhood action groups to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour. I also champion and seek to establish third-party reporting to enable and encourage residents to report incidents discretely when they occur.
    5. Cut Speeding on Roads
      One death on the road is too many. I will contiue to raise awareness of the dangers of speeding to local businesses including Royal Mail.
    6. Better facilities for Young People
      I will ensure that young people have something to do.  For example, establishing youth clubs and activities which will take them off the streets.
    7. Neighbourhood Planning
      I will ensure that the local community is consulted with correctly to ensure that there is suitable affordable housing and ensure there are adequate suitable local school places. I will also ensure that planning decisions in the future are community-based, sustainable and in the best interests of the local community and not developers.
    8. Give Power back to Local People
      Many residents feel left out of the decisions made that affect their lives.  I will ensure that local forums and residents groups are able to be established and supported to give residents a stronger voice.

    These ‘eight to get straight’ are areas of concern for the residents that live on Kennet Island and as a fellow resident, I appreciate why these have been raised as local issues.  Look out for my ‘Eight to Get Straight’ in Whitley.

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