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700 STRONG RULING BODY FOR SINGLE ASSOCIATION

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The local authority associations have finally unveiled the plans for a single association to replace them in 1996, ...
The local authority associations have finally unveiled the plans for a single association to replace them in 1996, with a shadow association starting next year.

The Joint Association Member Steering Group has issued a draft prospectus for consultation.

The single association's council would initially have 700 or more members, with each authority's voting power weighted according to population and whether it was unitary or part of a two tier area.

Every council could send at least one member, while the largest could send four.

It would meet two or three times a year. Membership would drop once the local government structure review reduced the number of councils.

The key political body in the association would be the executive committee, consisting of association officers, standing committee chairs, regional representatives and other representatives appointed by the political group leaders to ensure proportionality.

There would be around six sub committees under the executive covering issues such as management, finance, press and public relations and law and parliament.

Standing committees would reflect the main local government service areas and specialist interests such as international affairs.

Committee members would be nominated regionally to reflect the local political balance. In two tier areas nominations could only be made from councils with responsibility for the particular service covered by the committee.

Councils would be free to get together to set up regional bodies. There would be groupings to represent the differing interests of urban and rural authorities. London would have a special committee similar to the London boroughs' present setup with the Association of Metropolitan Authorities.

The attitude of the two London associations to the proposed single national association has not been finalised.

They have stressed the need for the capital to be given a separate status from other parts of England, but London Boroughs Association Secretary John Hall said further developments would depend on the councils elected next month.

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