Concerns over local government reorganisation are marring devolution talks in the north-west.
The Lancashire region has been told it should streamline its multi-layered local authority system as part of any future devolution deals, but councils have warned this may badly affect their services and communities.
Lancaster City Council said it was ‘concerned’ that any reorganisation ‘may undermine the delivery of key services to our communities, such as climate change mitigations and actions to address increased poverty and inequality’.
The devolution White Paper later this year is expected to encourage mergers of districts and the creation of unitaries within county boundaries.
A Lancaster spokeswoman added: ‘We are concerned that this is another attempt by the Government to delay addressing the crisis in adult and children’s social care, by seeking to draw on the already stretched reserves of district councils.’