Plans for Essex County Council to join forces with Brentwood Council to bring services together and provide a single point of contact for residents have been revealed in an article in the Echo this week. The report goes on to say that it is thought to be the first plan of this kind in the UK.
The deputy leader of Rochford District Council, Keith Hudson, was quoted as saying:
“If Essex is going down this road then it could just finish off being one large unitary authority. Then there would not be any local government left which would be close to the people. ”
Clearly there are economies to be gained through such a proposal but at a time when we are trying to increase public involvement in decisions affecting them locally these plans seem likely to take decision making further away from the people affected.