Labour county councillors will put forward a proposal for KCC to foot part of the bill for a potential Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) of the Manston airport site. The motion, which is due to be discussed at next week’s council meeting in Maidstone on July 17, could also see KCC cover some of the cost of Thanet council’s report into the viability of a CPO. Proposed by Dover councillor Gordon Cowan and seconded by Swale representative Roger Truelove, the motion states: “Kent County Council supports the actions taken so far by Thanet District Council to retain Manston as a regional airport.
“We recognise the value that a regional airport brings to East Kent and are disappointed at its closure. Kent County Council further recognises that Thanet District Council is unlikely to have the resources to go through with a Compulsory Purchase Order, with all of the linked legal cost, by itself. Therefore as the upper tier authority we agree to support Thanet District Council’s investigations into the viability of a Compulsory Purchase Order with financial contributions and support from our legal team. Should Thanet District Council proceed with a Compulsory Purchase Order, we agree to support them further with financial and legal support.”
The motion will be discussed by councillors in a time-limited debate at the meeting next Thursday before a decision is made.
The proposal could be opposed by Conservative or Ukip councillors, who hold 45 and 17 seats respectively on the county council, compared to Labour’s 13.