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Liberal Democrats on Kent County Council

County Councillor Rob Bird for Maidstone Central

Rob Bird

Rob Bird and Dan Daley are jointly county councillors for Maidstone Central Division which covers Allington, Bridge, Fant, Heath and High Street wards. Rob was first elected in 2012.

In 2017 Rob was elected Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group and became Leader of the Opposition at Kent County Council. He is the Liberal Democrat spokesperson for finance at County Hall. He is determined to make the County Council better run and more accountable to the people of Kent.

Rob has lived with his family in the Maidstone area for over 30 years. Until he retired 10 years ago, his professional background was in financial management and operational planning. This has provided him with the experience and expertise to be the Lib Dem Group's spokesman on financial affairs and to keep a watchful eye on how the County Council spends its money.

Rob writes: "Many residents are concerned they are about current financial wastage at Kent County Council, the substantial cuts to front line services and proposed further cuts in the future. With KCC looking at alternative means to providing essential public services it is crucial that councillors scrutinise the new arrangements to ensure that standards are maintained or improved."

Rob is Chairman of the Trustee Board at Citizen Advice Maidstone where he previously worked as a volunteer advisor. He is a keen gardener and, when time permits, he enjoys watching Kent playing cricket.

If you have any issues please do not hesitate to contact Rob.

Tel: 07887 897427 e-mail rob.bird@kent.gov.uk

News and Updates from Rob Bird

  • Rob at Dover
    Article: Jul 19, 2020

    Minister admits that Government is planning for significant disruption in Kent at the end of the Brexit transition period

    Earlier this week the Government completed the purchase of the so-called "MOJO" customs clearance site and lorry holding area next to Jct. 10a on the M20 near Ashford. The Government's plans first came to light last Friday week. They were previously kept secret from Ashford Borough Council and local residents, although the Cabinet Member has confirmed that Kent CC was aware of the Government's proposals.

  • Martin Cox
    Article: Jun 11, 2020

    Kent County Council has agreed to waive the £190 license fee it was charging for catering business for setting up tables and chairs outside their premises. The fee will now be waived for 6 weeks. The move follows pressure from opposition councillors at County Hall and outcry from traders across the County.

  • Rob Bird
    Article: May 29, 2020

    Traditional season tickets are unlikely to be attractive for many rail commuters in the future. The rail operators need to provide more flexible ticket options.

    During the lockdown working from home has become a new routine for many people. Home working has had some positive benefits both for staff and for employers. Now, as the lockdown is gradually lifted, it is clear that many of these workers are unlikely to revert to 5 day-a-week commuting. Instead, many staff are expected to adopt more flexible arrangements, going into work just occasionally.

  • Munira Wilson
    Article: May 18, 2020

    The Liberal Democrats are calling on the Government to ramp up mental health support for health and care staff in Kent and Medway to ensure "world-class" support for those tackling the virus head on.

    Highlighting the "deep scar" coronavirus will leave on health and care staff in Kent and Medway, the Liberal Democrats are proposing a package of mental health measures, including:

  • Sad old man
    Article: Apr 6, 2020
    By Rob Bird

    Amongst all the shocking statistics of deaths attributable to Covid-19 it is easy to forget the large numbers of people who die from other natural causes each day. Many of these people are cared for, with compassion and dignity, in our hospices.

    Hospices are an intrinsic part of our society. They also take pressure of our hospitals and social care services, which is vital at the current time.

  • Munira Wilson
    Article: Mar 16, 2020

    Liberal Democrat Health Spokesperson Munira Wilson MP has called for all social care workers to be tested for coronavirus, alongside NHS staff, and has asked the Health Secretary for clarity on the issue of testing for the virus.

    After raising the question of coronavirus testing in the House of Commons, Munira Wilson said:

    "Some of the most vulnerable in our society live in care homes. Shortages in the care workforce are already a problem. That's why staff at care homes must be supported to the same level as staff in the NHS.

    "It is essential that front-line NHS staff are tested for coronavirus. It is also critical that front-line social care workers are tested. That is why I raised this issue with the Secretary of State for Health in the House of Commons today.

    "At present, the Secretary of State is not providing sufficient detail about how this will be achieved and the timeframe for this. We need urgent answers.

  • Article: Mar 2, 2020

    "Today's report of Kent's first case of coronavirus in Maidstone will concern many. Our thoughts are obviously for the patient, his or her family, work colleagues and friends.

    We now know that it is highly likely that Covid-19 will have a major impact on Maidstone and the rest of Kent. We are liaising with officers at both County and Borough level to ensure that everything is being done to get Kent prepared for any emergency.

  • Rob at CH
    Article: Feb 12, 2020

    The disabled bus pass and companion pass are currently only valid from 9:30 am onwards. Last September Kent County Council unanimously approved a Liberal Democrat proposal to make the pass valid for travel in Kent before 9:30am. KCC should get the new arrangements put in place straight away.

    KCC has set aside £200,000 in its proposed budget for 2020-21 to cover the additional costs. But, 5 months after agreeing to the proposal, KCC has yet to work out how best to implement the new arrangements. That's not good enough.

  • Transport Costs
    Article: Feb 11, 2020
    By Rob Bird, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group at Kent County Council

    The Prime Minister has announced £5 billion of new funding to overhaul bus and cycle links for every region outside London. This should result in well over £100 million being allocated to Kent. It is very welcome but much more will be needed.

    Bus services outside London are in crisis, with less and less people taking the bus and consequently more and more people relying upon their cars. The vast majority of bus users are concessionary pass-holders - either young people going to school or college or 'senior citizens' who are eligible to free bus travel.

  • Iwade Lorry
    Article: Jan 24, 2020

    At a Kent County Council meeting this week councillors endorsed a KCC proposal to implement a trial lorry control area aimed to substantially reduce inappropriate HGV movements. The trial area is likely to be to the south of Maidstone.

    The County Council is already in advanced discussions with the Government about obtaining the necessary legal powers to permit KCC officers to undertake the enforcement. A similar scheme is already in place in London. Up to now, most HGV restrictions in Kent have tended to be flouted by lorry drivers.