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Thirty years a councillor

November 10, 2016 6:14 PM
By Councillor Jack Cohen in Barnet Press

Cllr Jack CohenBarnet Council presented me with a vellum of appreciation at last week's full council meeting.

This is in recognition of 30 years' service. The mayor read out a very, very, very long list of council committees I had served on. It has been a privilege to serve residents for so long.

I must add that in the 30 years I have worked with some fantastic, hard-working councillors from across the political spectrum.

How things have changed. There were no emails back in 1986. I have kept many of my correspondence with residents done on a very basic word processor.

The issues though have not changed. Street cleaning, planning, broken pavements, libraries - all remain a constant source of complaints.

Back then there were no controlled parking zones or traffic wardens.

We did have the parks constabulary complete with Rottweiler dogs until a scandal broker and they were quickly disbanded.

Gradually over the years officers of the council have taken over more and more control of decisions.

Councillors used to be involved in naming new blocks of flats or new roads, visiting allotments and schools admission appeals.

Small things in the scheme of things. I grant you, but indicative of how the balance has swung over the past 30 years.