Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more


  • Comment
Greater influence for local government in Europe, enshrined in the proposed European constitution, should be fought...
Greater influence for local government in Europe, enshrined in the proposed European constitution, should be fought for even if the document is ditched.

That was the message from the Local Government International Bureau following the UK's decision to postpone a referendum on the constitution, and 'no' votes in France and the Netherlands.

The treaty was set to impose an obligation on the European Commission to consult local authorities more extensively.

It gave greater recognition to the role of the Committee of the Regions, the body that consults councils in Europe.

LGIB chair Ken Bodfish (Lab) said although local government has been consulted in the past, the constitution would embed that role.

The LGIB will lobby UK government to retain the role of local government, as outlined in the treaty, even if the document is thrown out.

Mr Bodfish said: 'We are concerned these positive proposals about embedding the role of local government should be retained. We don't care how they are retained.'

Mr Bodfish added that councils must 'combat the negativity towards Europe' and advocated a pragmatic approach.

He said: 'Local government needs to influence Europe in order to benefit citizens. Europe is not going to go away.'

As much as 70% of the day-to-day work of local government is influenced by European legislation. In particular, local environment legislation is based upon European legislation.

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.