Emigrating councillor Brian Riley goes to ground before departing for America
PUBLISHED: 09:00 12 March 2015 | UPDATED: 15:54 12 March 2015
Calls for county councillor Brian Riley to stand down from the authority when he emigrates to North Carolina next month are growing.
And after being thrown out of the Conservative group at Endeavour House on Tuesday he could be thrown out of the party altogether next week.
The South Suffolk association issued a statement calling for him to make way for a new candidate. It said: “The officers of South Suffolk Conservative Association have recently been made aware that Councillor Riley, who represents the Hadleigh Division at Suffolk County Council, is relocating to North Carolina.
“While they are sorry to see him leave, they are concerned that Councillor Riley will not be able effectively to serve his electorate from North Carolina.
“He was requested to resign, allowing a by-election to take place. In the absence of a resignation, we endorse the proposal of the Conservative Group at the County Council to withdraw the whip from Councillor Riley.
“The Association will commence, as soon as practicable, the process to appoint a new candidate for the Hadleigh Division.”
The association’s management committee is due to hold a meeting next week and is expected to discuss whether he should be thrown out of the party for bringing the Conservatives into disrepute.
The party’s constitution says that anyone threatened with expulsion should be given the chance to defend themselves – but officials from the association have been unable to make contact with Mr Riley since the news of his departure emerged.
Neither have officials or senior councillors at the county who have been trying to set up a meeting with chief executive Deborah Cadman or monitoring officer Tim Ryder.
County council leader Mark Bee said Mr Riley’s suspension meant he was no longer able to sit with the Tory group and would not be able to attend any group meetings.
Mr Riley’s place on the council’s development control committee will be re-allocated to another Conservative.