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ONE IN THREE SHIRES UP AND RUNNING BY 1996

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Less than a third of new councils in shire England will be in operation by April 1996 with the remainder in place t...
Less than a third of new councils in shire England will be in operation by April 1996 with the remainder in place the following year, Local Government Minister David Curry told MPs on Monday. In a letter to English MPs Mr Curry says shadow elections would take place a year before each authority is to be established. 'We expect plans for 30% of new councils to be ready to permit elections to a new 'shadow' council in May 1995. The shadow council will prepare the new structure and will then take over full responsibility for it the following April without a further election', the letter says.

'The remaining councils should follow exactly the same pattern exactly one year later. That means all new councils should be up and running by April 1997'. Elections for councils with the same boundaries as existing councils will be held in the continuing authorities in May 1995 or 1996.

But Mr Curry describes this exception, which has outraged councils anxious that neither district or county officers should have an advantage in securing jobs in the new councils, as 'probably rare'. Mr Curry's letter accompanies directions to the Local Government Commission to restart its reorganisation on 13 December in the 29 county areas yet to reviewed.
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