Leader meets Prime Minister - time for action not words.(January 11, 2011)
NEWS that Wiltshire council leader Jane Scott met with Prime Minister David Cameron and discussed the Government's proposal to give local people more say could easily be met with a hollow laugh in Warminster.
Here the local council wants to ride roughshod over the views of the inhabitants and foist an unpopular expensive scheme on local people in the form of the Assembly Rooms, which are rightly the responsibility of the county council.
Mrs Jane Scott was invited to meet the Prime Minister at a reception hosted at 10 Downing Street on Monday.
Among the issues discussed was the Government’s Localism Bill, which will lay the foundations for the Big Society by radically transforming the
relationships between central government, local government, communities and individuals.
It aims to strengthen local democracy by handing new powers down to councils, establishing powerful new rights for local
people, overhauling the planning system, as well as making housing decisions fairer and supporting local businesses.
Mrs Scott said: “It was an honour to visit Downing Street and to meet with the Prime Minister to discuss the positive changes the
Government is making to the way local councils are run.
''By putting an end to the hoarding of power within central government and the top-down control of communities, it will allow local people the freedom to run
their lives and neighbourhoods in their own way.”
Former county councillor Steve Dancey, said: ''All very well but our local council is dominated by a cabal of the unknown and unaccountable who pay scant regard for the views of townsfolk.
''I approve of the Government's proposals in the round but it is time for them to walk the walk as well as talk the talk.
''If Mrs Scott is genuine she will, at the earliest opportunity put down proposals to end the dreadful cabinet and leader system imposed by the last Labour Government and restore the committee system which gave all elected councillors a fair say.''