Row erupts between two city councils

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A ROW has broken out after Portsmouth City Council failed to send a representative to a transport meeting.

Southampton City Council’s cabinet member called on Portsmouth to take the Solent Transport Joint Committee ‘seriously’ after issues.

It comes after the council’s constitution was amended to allow non-cabinet members to attend the meeting, solely to help Portsmouth.

But Labour councillor Jacqui Rayment said the authority ‘wasted the time’ of the other councillors from Southampton, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight that attended to discuss plans for the region’s transport network.

She said: ‘We were told it couldn’t send anyone because of purdah (the pre-election period) which it said meant it couldn’t facilitate members – these meetings are scheduled nine months to a year in advance.’

But Portsmouth Tory council boss Donna Jones hit back, saying there was no need to hold the meeting so close to next week’s election, saying it wasn’t an urgent meeting.

She added: ‘It was a poor decision to hold the meeting the week before the election.’

and during the ‘purdah’ period,’ she said.