Staff from the MCS head office in St Asaph are taking part in a feature in the local newspaper the Daily Post all this week.
Every day until Friday we’ll be having our say on a variety of different issues of local and national interest.
Check out our photos and opinions all this week on our blog:
Friday - According to research 1 in 5 families in Britain are in debt to their energy supplier. Do you think the government should do more to control energy price rises?
Yes, they certainly need to grow a backbone when it comes to dealing with the large energy suppliers. Keeping warm is a necessity, not a luxury.
The government’s attempts to increase market competition are showing positive signs in reducing energy prices. I am hoping to see stricter market regulations to enable smaller independent suppliers to trade and compete with the more established companies.
No, I don’t think so. The government should invest more in renewable energy, like solar power and help all households to have their own solar panels. This would not only reduce bills but also help to produce greener energy and lead to job creation (production of solar panels, installations and servicing). The energy companies would then need to be more competitive on price as people would no longer be so dependent on them for all their power needs.
Yes. Energy suppliers are raising prices year after year with some excuse or another about increasing costs to them but when companies like British Gas are announcing record profits year after year something isn’t right. There needs to be a public investigation into the energy industry and the government needs to step in now and cap energy prices until the investigation is complete.
Thursday - Should toy adverts be banned from in between children’s TV shows?
No, I don’t think they should be banned. I think they are a good way of advertising the current toys on the market to children and can prove to be exceptionally helpful from a parent’s perspective when asking your child what they want for their birthday / Christmas etc.
Children are too young to understand the power of advertising and are bombarded with too many powerful messages which they succumb to. Although it’s a parent’s responsibility to say no, it’s making their jobs difficult and taking advantage of the potential pester power children have. However, children should be exposed and learn about advertising as it is part of our global culture. I don’t think adverts should be banned but their frequency moderated. More damaging adverts such as alcohol and fast food adverts are going to pose more of a risk to them.
I don’t think the adverts should be banned, I think children are more likely to want something because their friends have it. Although toy adverts which relate to the programme the child is watching may prompt the child to ask for that particular toy.
The adverts are part of growing up. Kids might want everything they see but it’s up to parents to guide them into decisions on what they would like and what they can have, say for Christmas, birthdays, special occasions and rewards. It’s only a problem when there’s more adverts than the programme itself.
Wednesday - Would you say the government provides enough support for small businesses?
I think there is enough support for small businesses but sometimes it’s difficult to know where to find it as it’s offered by a variety of agencies and organisations. It would be really useful if there was one central point of contact that small businesses could go to find out about the various schemes and grants.
As the lifeblood of the Welsh economy I would like to see further support for young entrepreneurs, and to focus support services on high potential start-ups especially amongst graduates.
I don’t think there are enough rates subsidies for small businesses. Some councils provide 100% rural rate relief for small businesses, whereas others charge extortionate amounts.
There can always be more done to help support small businesses, I think the problem is that the schemes they introduce are not flexible enough towards the different problems that are faced on a monthly / yearly basis. The government also needs to proactively get the message across that there is help out there for small businesses.
Tuesday - Do you think St Asaph is prepared for possible flooding in the future?
Can you ever fully prepare for possible flooding? We can certainly make flood defences stronger and better advice can be given when flooding is expected but sometimes flood defences can go too far – Take Llandudno for example, a freak flood in 1993 has now led to the sandy beaches being ruined by the over the top flood defences.
Not really. It’s all well and good having improved emergency procedures and temporary flood barriers but that won’t stop a flood. Getting people away safely is obviously a priority but we mustn’t forget about the massive financial and emotional consequences of losing your possessions and not being able to return to your home for months. The authorities need to act more quickly to get a permanent solution in place.
Yes, I think so after the recent exercise carried out by various agencies to practice emergency evacuations and the putting up of temporary flood defences. Following the flooding in 2012 which was devastating for the community, destroying homes and businesses, I think this pro-active exercise will ensure the city is better prepared to cope with flooding in future.
The temporary flood barriers and free flood warnings have been a step in the right direction. I would like to see the long term plan finalised and implemented as a matter of urgency.
Monday - Should more speed restrictions be placed on our roads?
The speeds around residential areas should be lowered to 20mph as 10mph can be the difference between life and death. Motorway speeds should move up to 80mph in good driving conditions, and lowered to 60 when bad, like in France and Germany. Boundary speed limits should be checked and abolished where necessary.
Perhaps a lower speed limit in built-up-areas which is lowered to 20mph as this is where incidents are most prevalent. Many people may not be aware that the speed limit of 30 miles per hour usually applies, unless signs show otherwise. Therefore more information should be given out to people to ensure they already know existing speed limits. Speed awareness courses could be compulsory as a refresher course to ensure drivers are educated on speed limits every few years rather than placing more restrictions on our roads.
I think there are enough speed restrictions in place, but I think more should be done to ensure they are adhered to. Especially in small rural villages, rather than aiming to catch people who are literally right on the verge of the way out of speed restricted areas as is often the case.
I think more speed restrictions are required on roads known to be accident black spots, as the speed limit can alert the driver to the type of road they are travelling along. Variable speed limits are also a good idea as they take into account, for example weather and traffic flow.