government's consultation papers on reform of local government finance
as a 'missed opportunity'.
Paul Burstow MP, Liberal Democrat local government team leader said:
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