Call for council to be ‘given tools’ to look after county

Lincolnshire should “stand up taller and shout louder” to help usher in a new era in local Government and get a fairer deal.

At the first meeting of Lincolnshire County Council since the General Election, leader Martin Hill called on the Government to devolve greater powers to county-led authorities, saying: “Give us the responsibility and we’ll rise to it.
“Give us the tools and we’ll do the job.”

Mr Hill outlined that the county council’s current budget reflects an annual saving of £129million on that of four years ago, but the council could still be expected to find a further £120million in annual savings by 2018/19 despite a 7.7 per cent growth in the population.

He added: “That’s a really tall order – and not something, I believe, that can be done by simply cutting back more and more on services.
“With the General Election behind us, local councils – all of us – need to stand up taller and shout louder about the importance of what we do.

“We also need to campaign for a fairer financial settlement for non-metropolitan authorities, which have had a bad deal for too long.

“In short, the time has come for a wholly new era for local government, with new ideas reflected in new arrangements.
“If they happen – and they must – councils can not only prove themselves capable of providing good services for less money. We can also be the engine for local and regional economic growth, fuelling the national recovery and a return to long-term prosperity.”

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