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Reader letter: Is it time to get rid of county councils?

20 August, 2018 - 05:15
Suffolk County Council offices, Endeavour House. Picture: ARCHANT

Suffolk County Council offices, Endeavour House. Picture: ARCHANT


In the 1970s the local government system that had served this country for many years was deemed no longer fit for purpose and UDCs, RDCs, county boroughs and even some county councils like Middlesex were abolished in favour of the system we have today.

It has become obvious with cutbacks and economies, as well as amalgamations, that this system is struggling.

Maybe instead of tinkering a complete rethink is needed.

Why not do away with county councils completely, split their responsibilities to new super districts combining two or even three of the old districts and, where appropriate, metropolitan districts and central government, as much as possible, being managed locally.

Each authority will have elected members who stand as independents with no political party involvement. Leaders will be elected by the electorate.

Each authority will be responsible for maintaining its own police and fire service and the heads of these will also be elected, with each candidate having must completed a term of service as a constable or firefighter to be eligible.

This combines the offices of chief constable and PCC.

All elections to be held under a proportional representation system to ensure a true representation of the electorate’s wishes.

I hear howls of protest from the political parties, county councils, PCCs etc but the money saved by eliminating these will fund a large majority of changes and ensure the wishes of the electorate are given more than lip service as at present.

Gerry Crease, Stowmarket

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