Unitary authorities proposed by District Councils

In the past couple of weeks or so, the question of whether local government in Oxfordshire should be structured as one or more unitary authorities has raised its head with a vengeance. In 2014, County commissioned a financial study of the ramifications of forming one or more unitary authorities in Oxfordshire. On County Budget day 16 Feb 2016, county council agreed to pursue this avenue as a way to reduce costs enough to keep services going in the face of severe and continuing Government cuts.

A mere eyeblink later, the various district councils’ came forward with their own ideas, still uncosted and lacking any detail of service delivery. The district councils propose several unitary authorities across the county, plus a sort of overarching combined committee to handle issues that cross the boundaries, such as highways and tansport. See the Oxford Mail’s report here: http://bit.ly/1oSjRT0 (The comments are worth a read too.)

Here’s our (Vale Lib Dems) position:

“The Vale of White Horse District Council Liberal Democrats support the idea of unitary authorities in principle. Once there is verified information about the economic and service delivery costs and benefits of all options being considered by the Council, we will listen to the public before we determine our position on any specific proposals.”

Will you let me know what you think?