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MP CALLS FOR BANHAM TO STEP DOWN FROM REVIEW COMMITTEE

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The chairman of the parliamentary select committee on the environment said yesterday that Sir John Banham should re...
The chairman of the parliamentary select committee on the environment said yesterday that Sir John Banham should resign as chair of the Local Government Commission for England, the Independent reports (p3).

Robert Jones, MP for Hertfordshire West, is reported as criticising Sir John for making 'ridiculous' decisions and being a 'prima donna'.

In October Sir John gave evidence to the parliamentary select committee on the commission's review of the two-tier structure of district and county councils. The committee has decided to publish minutes of evidence containing verbatim records of its questioning of Sir John and of David Curry, the local government minister.

Mr Jones added his own criticisms of Sir John last night. He argued that Sir John's proposals for Derbyshire and Durham were inconsistent.

The paper reports Sir John Banham as saying that he intends to see the job through until the end of next year unless invited to stand down by ministers. He claimed to be listening to local people's opinions.

Lancashire and Derbyshire county councils have asked the High Court to intervene in the review, on the grounds that the government changed its guidance to the commission after it started work.

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