A VETERAN councillor who resigned in protest over the handling of a legal dispute with car park giants NCP is bidding for a surprise return to politics.
Tom Wye stood down from Worthing Borough Council just 12 months ago, shocked at the gagging order placed on councillors which barred them from revealing details of the controversial settlement.
A Marine ward councillor for 11 years, Mr Wye will battle for the Tarring seat at the local elections on May 7.
He said: “I’ve had a year’s sabbatical. I miss not being involved.
“My view hasn’t changed at all (on the dispute). I still think it’s an obscenity that people can have a gagging order. I still think it’s a travesty of justice.
“I think I have made my point and still won’t let it go. I will be working to get things changed so we don’t accept gagging orders again.”
Mr Wye called for a police investigation into the events surrounding the dispute with NCP, which revolved around errors in a 2009 contract to trial reduced car parking tarriffs in the town’s multi-storey car parks.
He told the Herald at the time the resignation was ‘on principle’ and that he had no other option.
Labour’s Jim Deen, also standing in Tarring, expressed surprise over Mr Wye’s candidacy.
He said: “It is rather odd to be standing so soon. He resigned over them not revealing the information to the public on the sum of money paid out to NCP.
“The sum has still not been revealed, although it has become known through public knowledge, but nothing has changed on that issue and the Tory group hasn’t revealed anything.”
Other candidates standing in Tarring are: Jim Deen (Lab), Hazel Thorpe (Lib), Ross Johnson (Green) and Adrian Price (UKIP).
Mrs Thorpe is seeking re-election, with Lib Dems currently occupying all three ward seats.
Mr Wye will be the Conservative candidate.
For the Herald’s original coverage of the resignation click here