The Motion, as printed in the Agenda was proposed by Councillor Gledhill and seconded by Councillor Smith. The Motion read as follows:
We call on the elected members of Thurrock Council to support any judicial review, or other legal action, that may be possible against Highways England proposals for the Lower Thames Crossing.
Councillor Gledhill presented his motion stating the Council was unanimously against the proposed Lower Thames Crossing with the scheme failing to bring any obvious benefits to Thurrock residents, with Highways England delaying the process and misleading residents and businesses. Councillor Gledhill stated that every effort will be made by the Council to leave no stone unturned and to get the best for the borough. Councillor Gledhill encouraged members to support this motion so that the judicial review can commence with the evidence gathering process and be ready to challenge with the support of Councillors, Essex Councils and Thurrock Business Board.
Councillor Smith stated his support for the Motion that it was now time for the Council to move forward with the judicial review and present the evidence. That Highways England had failed to respond to requests made by the Lower Thames Crossing Task Force which had delayed the opportunity for the Council to challenge. Councillor Smith encouraged all to get involved in the consultation.
Councillor J Kent stated his support to the Motion and his opposition to the Lower Thames Crossing and that there was a need for a crossing but at the right place. The plans offered would deliver no benefits for local businesses or residents but increase congestion on the roads. Councillor J Kent supported the judicial review but consideration had to be taken into account if this option failed. Every resident had a reason to reject this plan and should be encouraged to respond to the consultation and be given the information and evidence required to do so.
Councillor G Rice stated his support for the motion and called on the Government to review and look again at the plans.
Councillor Little stated her support for the motion with residents having the threat of a Lower Thames Crossing over the last 10 years. There appeared to be no logical to the plans with the consultation teams out of their depth advising residents incorrectly of road designs. Councillor Little encouraged all Members and residents to join the “Lower Thames Crossing Action Group”.
Councillor Huelin stated that the proposed Lower Thames Crossing would affect everyone in Thurrock and should engage with the consultation process.
Councillor Redsell stated her support for the motion and it was good that all 49 Councillors were working together. Councillor Redsell stated that the Council were not being informed sufficiently and the consultations were not working.
Councillor Spillman stated his support for this motion and noted his initial concerns over how the Lower Thames Crossing Task Force was set up and what evidence was presented at that time. Councillor Spillman stated that for the right evidence to be presented this time the Council would have the full backing from the Thurrock Independent Members.
Councillor Gledhill summed up by encouraging all residents, businesses and workers to get involved in the consultation process. Councillor Gledhill thanked Members for the comments and to take the motion forward.
The Mayor called a vote on the Motion.
Following a clear majority in favour, the Mayor declared the Motion carried.
At 9.30pm the Mayor stated that it was the close of the meeting and that
Members with Motions still to be heard could either speak on the Motion for no more than three minutes before the Motion will be put to the vote without debate or they may withdraw the Motion and resubmit for the next available meeting.
Councillor Tolson left the Chamber at 9.30pm.