Bercow calls for study into unitary benefits

John Bercow
John Bercow
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John Bercow, MP for Buckingham, has called for an independent study to establish whether a unitary authority would benefit the Vale.

Speaking this week, the Commons Speaker expressed his support for the Herald and Advertiser’s Unitary campaign, which is calling for all district councils and the county to explore joining forces to save taxpayers’ money.

He is ‘open-minded’ but wants to see a patient approach.

Mr Bercow said: “I think that there needs to be a thorough, independent, analysis of the different options before any changes to the current arrangement can be considered.

“What must remain an absolute priority, however, is that the vital services provided by local government are not compromised.

“I am not going to nail my colours to the mast and support one specific proposal.

“I think this is, rightly, something to be determined locally - not least by residents who the proposals would affect.”

When asked about the governmnet’s stance on unitary, Mr Bercow pointed to a a written question which was tabled in December.

In response, Marcus Jones, under-secretary of State for communities and local government said: “We support the move to create new unitary authorities where such a move is locally driven and enjoys local support.”