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ARROGANT CONSERVATIVES LAUNCH POWER GRAB

September 17, 2020 10:29 PM

Cllr Paul Holmes Sept 2020

Yesterday's Derbyshire County Council decision was a disgrace" says Cllr Paul Holmes, Leader of Chesterfield's Lib Dem Cllrs. "Conservative Council bosses are fighting like ferrets in a sack as they try to grab more power."

"Derby City have launched a bid to take over their neighbours and create a huge Council of up to 600,000 people. The County Council are talking of a rival bid to take over all of Derbyshire, creating a vast, remote and out of touch Council of up to a million people."

"Lib Dem County Cllrs voted against the Conservative proposals at yesterday's meeting. On principle, because huge Councils covering a wide geographical area, are bad for democracy and for local accountability. But also, because until both the Government White Paper and 'Vision Derbyshire' documents are published, the County Council are asking people to 'trust them' and in effect sign a blank cheque."

"County Council Leader Barry Lewis has made much of the possible cooperative approach called 'Vision Derbyshire' whereby the Derbyshire Councils work together. This sounds great in principle but virtually no one at all has seen this secret document, so what does it actually mean?"

"He threatens that he will seek to take over all of Derbyshire unless all 8 District and Borough Councils sign up to the demands made by 'Vision Derbyshire' proposals, such as 'a new formal governance model'. But what exactly are these 'must happen changes' as he describes them?"

"He is also going ahead with proposals to the Government to create a single, vast County wide Council. Just like the Leaders of Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire County Councils are doing. Just as the three of them tried and failed to do back in 2017/2018."

"Any sensible person has to ask if the so far secret 'Vision Derbyshire' plans are just a smokescreen for the County Council's real plans? Publish the 'Vision' then we can say if we agree with it or not. Meanwhile, Chesterfield became a 'Free Borough' in 1204 and local residents are unlikely to be happy with Conservative plans to abolish it!"