My motion which passed Norfolk County Council’s meeting on Monday called for a review of all possible local governance options, in the light of continuing funding cuts from government to all local authorities.
The completed review will come before Full Council next Spring. It is my hope that a totally open and transparent public debate will then take place on the best way forward, culminating in an extensive advisory poll to give residents of Norfolk their say. Although not legally binding, politicians would be unwise to ignore it.
The motion caused a knee jerk panic reaction from the Conservatives, who put forward an amendment to rule out any form of unitary governance, which was defeated. All of them then proceeded to vote against the substantive motion, which also appears to be voting against their own government’s national policy.
Readers should ask themselves why they did this.
The only rational answer is that they do not want to have an open debate about how best to preserve public services in Norfolk, rather they are far more concerned with their own self-preservation.
If the public decide that the status quo of eight highly paid chief executives, over 400 paid councillors and a host of senior managers accompanied by rises in council tax to sustain this is the best way forward, so be it. Personally, I think that in the current climate of austerity it is totally unsustainable.
UKIP Group leader, NCC