Minister warned of harbour sell-off
INTERESTED parties in securing a People's Port have written to transport minister Mike Penning to complain about the "damage" to the local and national interest in the current delays in Dover Harbour Board's (DHB) sell-off plans.
Signatories from the Dover People's Port Trust, the Chamber of Commerce, the port workers' union Unite and Dover Town Council are understood to have backed the strongly worded message to the under secretary of state for transport.
People's Port spokesman Neil Wiggins confirmed a letter outlining these views was due to be sent to the minister on Wednesday as the Express went to press.
He said he hopes Mr Penning will urge DHB into resubmitting its enhanced sell-off scheme or force the appointment of a new interim board.
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The letter voices deep concerns about the state of the port infrastructure, stating the level of maintenance has been insufficient, despite DHB sitting on large cash balances.
DHB chief executive Bob Goldfield said recently that there will be no resubmission of the port sell-off plan until a government inspector returns with its findings on a ferry company dispute over harbour tariff increases, known as a section 31 challenge.