UNITARY: Two or three authorities is the right model for Bucks according to district councils commissioned report

AVDC leader Neil Blake PNL-140414-161421001
AVDC leader Neil Blake PNL-140414-161421001

Two or three unitary councils providing services for residents is the right model for Bucks - that’s according to a report commissioned by district council chiefs.

Bucks County Council leaders believe that abolishing all the councils in favour of a single ‘super authority’ would provide a more streamlined money saving option.

But four district councils, which includes Aylesbury Vale District Council decided to commission their own bespoke report from Deloitte, which was published yesterday afternoon.

AVDC has previously signalled a will to break away and become a unitary authority in its own right.

The report examines all options, and the councils say that they will now discuss its contents with stakeholders including the county council.

Neil Blake, leader of Aylesbury Vale District Council said: “We welcome this report as a vital addition to the debate we need to have. Fundamental to good local government is delivering quality and consistent services to a diverse population, and it is the responsibility of all local councils and their elected members to do this as efficiently as possible.“

Currently Bucks County Council provides all big ticket services including childrens and adult services, some education functions and is responsible for roads. District councils are responsible for functions such as town planning and refuse collections.

Martin Tett, leader of Bucks County Council, said: “I welcome this report as a contribution to the wider debate on modernising local government in Buckinghamshire. The district councils’ report includes a number of interesting concepts which we would wish to discuss further with district colleagues.

“Given that the county council has already shared our report and conclusions with our district colleagues, I am surprised that the options evaluated in the report do not include the proposal already submitted to Government by the county council.”