Monday, 19 December 2011

Towy Community Church - Declarations of Interest

Just a brief post relating again to the decision made at the last full council meeting to 'fill' the latest gap in the funding for the Towy Community Church's 'bowling alley' project. The Minutes were published today and I note that two County Councillors, G Thomas and T Davies had declared an interest in this item as they were 'Christians'. Clearly they felt their religious beliefs possibly precluded them from making an impartial decision. I suppose the same could also be said for any atheists, agnostics etc amongst them all. Taken to the nth degree, there would be no one left in the Chamber. A couple of  Executive Board Members professed their general faith including Gwynne Wooldridge stating that the most important book was the Bible, and Cllr Pat Jones claimed she saw her 'role' as carrying out 'God's work' in the community. Another became almost emotional as he mentioned how he had contacted the Towy Community Church to give them some furniture and had been hugged by an extremely grateful recipient. Officers also spoke in support of the project.
As the 'financial' and 'faith' aspects of this partnership seem to have become blurred, one could almost reach the conclusion that the Council's involvement with the Towy Community Church was entirely inappropriate altogether, particularly given the intention of building a church and the link to the Mercy Ministries (removed last month).


Update 20th December; Mrs Angry (@BrokenBarnet) with an excellent post on the whole subject; Rewriting the Bible; Mrs Angry on God 

Another Update 20th December
I have now been informed that neither of the two Councillors who declared an interest left the meeting. (I was surprised when I saw the declarations as I could have sworn I didn't hear them - I hadn't because they were never spoken) In fact, Cllr G Thomas (Plaid) actually proposed the Motion to fund the Church and Cllr T Davies both spoke and voted on it. They would have had to clear all this with the legal department I presume??
The issue here is one of predetermination - all but a few (the 'few' being Cllrs Caiach and A Davies and a couple from Plaid) had clearly made up their minds to go for this long ago; the two declarations of interest, if I was being kind, could be interpreted as a show of honesty. if I was being cynical, in a master stroke, the ruling Executive managed to get the Plaid opposition to propose the motion, thereby being able to wash their hands of any blame when it all goes t**s up.


Cneifiwr said...

You have to wonder why two councillors felt they were unable to speak because of their Christian beliefs, while quite a few others who declared their faith seemed to have no qualms at all.

It makes no sense.

Cneifiwr said...

Well spotted. Both Gwyneth Thomas and Terry Davies declared themselves to be Christians when they spoke, as did a number of others. Whoever it is that manipulates - sorry - write the minutes, obviously thought this merited special attention. Something slightly sinister about this.

Meanwhile our old friends at the Evangelical Alliance have popped up in Barnet.

baarnett said...

Well done, getting in Private Eye's "Rotten Boroughs Awards 2011":

caebrwyn said...

@Cneifiwr The whole issue is outrageous, I imagine both the council and the TCC (and probable the Evangelical Alliance) are hoping it will all blow over. Personally I don't think it should.

@baarnet Thanks for the link! I have not had my copy yet :)

Anonymous said...

In this weeks Carmarthen Journal is an article outlining bthe proposed cuts which will be coming down the line. The proposed cuts will be life affecting and affect poor people disproportionately. Surely now is not the time to be investing public money into a church group leisure venture which is by no means guaranteed to be a success. Thinking about it if a bowling alley was such a sure fire winner wouldnt one of the top leisure companies have built one by now ?

On top of that, I beleive that if the project fails CCC would be third in line as regards money coming back - does this mean that the land would be sold and not revert to the ownership of the Council ?

To say that on the back of the project will come a food bank is misleading as one is already operated at the moment.

Why cant the council offer the church an industrial unit somewher to operate the food and furniture bank. This would seem to me to be a good compromise. BUT if the church wish to build a church I dont see why I should have to pay for it !!

Assuming that this blog is read by those in charge surely they must realise that this project is not sensible in the current climate and that they should think long and hard before sanctioning it.

Ive got a feeling that this is a scandal waiting to break !!