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Calls from Basildon businesses to halt street light switch off
6:00am Thursday 3rd October 2013 in Echo News
BUSINESS leaders are calling on County Hall bosses to halt plans to switch off street lights in Basildon.
Basildon councillors made it clear to Essex County Council they want bosses to suspend plans to turn off street lights between midnight and 5am.
Basildon Council is calling for an immediate halt to the plans until it can fully assess the effects on the community.
Clive Tant, chairman of the Basildon Business Group, said: “We support the council’s position and agree it has not been properly thought through.
“We are very concerned about the impact this will have on businesses and the local economy. We want to see evidence to prove this lights-out approach won’t have a negative impact.”
County Hall bosses announced 70 per cent of street lights will be turned off in the borough from November 1 in an effort to reduce its carbon footprint.
Rochford will follow, on January 1.
The county council has not confirmed specific areas where lights will be switched off, but a consultation is under way for residents to put their case forward for which areas should be kept lit.
Lights will be kept on in locations such as potentially dangerous roads, junctions and town centres.
However, Basildon Council is demanding the plans are deferred so it can carry out further consultation and research.
Tony Ball, Tory leader of Basildon Council, said: “I am pleased the Basildon Business Group is supporting our calls for a halt to these plans.
“More time is needed to assess the impact of turning off these lights andIhope Essex County Council can see the level of feeling on this subject and heeds our calls.”
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