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LIB DEMS CONDEMN GOVT PROPOSALS ON LOCAL GOVT REFORM AS A 'MISSED OPPORTUNITY'

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Liberal Democrats MPs this week condemned proposals in the ...
Liberal Democrats MPs this week condemned proposals in the

government's consultation papers on reform of local government finance

as a 'missed opportunity'.

Paul Burstow MP, Liberal Democrat local government team leader said:

'The government claim their proposals set out an agenda to renew local

democratic government. But in fact all they promise is to tighten central government's grip on local councils.

'New Labour have reneged on pre election promises to devolve power

from Whitehall to our town halls.

'The government's agenda for reform is nothing more then re packaging

Conservative policies. Capping becomes reserve powers to intervene;

community involvement is reduced to an endless march backwards and

forwards to polling stations to vote under a bankrupt voting system.'

Liberal Democrats are calling for devolution of power and financial

freedom, a fair voting system and a power of local competence for local government.

Paul Burstow MP said: 'The only incentive for people to vote in local elections and take notice of events at their town hall is the knowledge that local government can make a difference to their lives. As long as councils remain little more than central government's agents, attempts to renew local democracy will fails.'

Contact Jen Tankard on 0171 219 1411 for copies of the Liberal

Democrat local government team's submission

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