Jamie Hailstone 08 September 2016

South West districts to merge

South West districts to merge image

Taunton Deane and West Somerset councils are set to merge following a council meeting last night.

Members of West Somerset DC voted 21 to four in favour of the plans, with one abstention, to merge Taunton Deane, which had already agreed to the proposal in July.

West Somerset DC leader, Cllr Anthony Trollope-Bellew, said it was hardest decision he has ever made during his time in local government.

'We are taking control of our future rather than waiting for a solution to be imposed,' he said. 'Our residents will still receive the services they rely on – if we had done nothing the future of those services were at risk. We are putting people, rather than politics, first.'

Leader of Taunton Deane, Cllr John Williams, added: 'This is a huge and radical step – one that is being taken to make us fit for the future and stronger together. As one council covering Taunton Deane and West Somerset, we will not only save money to invest in our community but have a far stronger voice.'

West Somerset MP Ian Liddell-Grainger said he disagreed with the councillors’ decision, but respected the ‘size of the vote in favour’.

‘However it is now up to the council to convince local people that merging with Taunton is likely to work and is what people really want. I hope, and will press for, the most rigorous test of public opinion,’ added Mr Liddell-Grainger.

‘Any proposal for merger will have to be signed off by ministers,’ he added. ‘Do not expect any minister to eagerly pick up their pen if the terms fall short.’

The leaders of both councils met with local government minister Marcus Jones earlier this week to discuss the plans, who will now be asked to approve the merger.

Mobilising the social care workforce image

Mobilising the social care workforce

A continued drive towards more mobile public services is needed to help overcome social care challenges in the bleak winter months, says David McKinney.
SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Occupational Therapist - Recruitment Day

Essex County Council
£30906 - £42254 per annum
Occupational Therapist - Recruitment DayPermanent, Full Time£30,906 - £42,254 per annumLocation
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Social Worker - Recruitment Day

Essex County Council
£30906 - £42254 per annum
Social Worker - Recruitment DayPermanent, Full Time£30,906 - £42,254 per annumLocation
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Social Worker - Learning Disabilities & Autism Team North

Essex County Council
£30906 - £42254 per annum
Job summary and Responsibilities About the Role Working to support adults, and their families, who have complex social needs and are more vulnerab England, Essex, Clacton-On-Sea
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Commissioning Manager - SEND

Essex County Council
Up to £250 per day
Job PurposeCommissioning is a key function within ECC, working across the system to improve outcomes for Essex residents and bring about significant England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Senior CIL and S106 Officer

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£33,543 - £46,962
We are looking for an exceptional candidate to fill a Senior role within the Information and Planning Obligations Team. London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue