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Don't Trust Derbyshire County Council

October 18, 2020 8:35 PM
By Paul Holmes

Cllr Paul Holmes Sept 2020

Chesterfield's Liberal Democrat Borough Cllrs voted this week to support the 'Vision Derbyshire' proposals for greater cooperation and joint working between Derbyshire Councils.

Paul Holmes, Leader of the 17 Lib Dem Cllrs, explained that, "the Lib Dems support greater collaborative working across Derbyshire but refuse to sign a blank cheque for whatever is suggested. Any proposal to hand over decision making to some Joint Board of Council Leaders will have to be approved by Chesterfield Councillors"

"Every Council will have red lines" he said. "In Chesterfield's case for example, the then Lib Dem Council, kept our Council Houses when the Blair/Brown Labour Government tried to force everyone to get rid of them. Many Councils no longer run their own housing and therefore we would not want to see the fate of Chesterfield's Council Housing passed over to a Joint Board."

Paul Holmes also condemned the County Council's suggestion of a vast single Derbyshire Council of over 800,000 people, describing it as a thinly disguised power grab by the Conservatives.

He explains that "On the 3rd of September Derbyshire County Council Leader Barry Lewis held a secret meeting with the Government to discuss a huge single Council for Derbyshire. Yet on the 4th September he signed a letter to the Government saying he supported the 'Vision Derbyshire' approach. Then on 9th September he put out a Press Release demanding that all 8 Districts and Borough's, without a single exception, sign up to every as yet unknown demand of Vision Derbyshire -or he would urge the Government to abolish everyone else and create his vast all Derbyshire Council."

Paul added, "You have to doubt someone who tries to support two entirely opposed plans at the same time. Especially when he had already tried and failed to create a super council for Derbyshire back in 2018. Large, remote and unaccountable Unitary Councils are unacceptable."