The leader of Gedling Borough Council said they will ‘fight to keep their independence’ after hearing of plans for a ‘super council’ that would result in the demise of borough authorities.
The plans were revealed yesterday by the leader of Nottinghamshire County Council, Cllr Kay Cutts.
Cllr Cutts said yesterday she wants to ‘get on with’ plans to abolish district and borough councils.
She said this would involved doubling the number of county councillors (from 66 to 132) but abolishing district and borough councillors altogether.
This would mean a dramatic reduction in the overall number of councillors.
She also hopes it would save money by removing back-office duplication.
Councillor John Clarke is the leader of Gedling Borough Council, and represents the Netherfield ward on the borough council.
Today he reacted to the plans for a ‘super council’ revealed by Cllr Cutts yesterday.
He said: “I’m against the unitary authority because I think it’s much too big. We will resist any such take over.
“We still want to retain our independence, but work closely on some things with Nottingham and Derby, similar to London boroughs.
“If I thought it was a good thing for the people of Gedling then I would go for it.
“But we’re doing some good stuff as a small authority and I want to keep working on that.”
Cllr Clarke is in favour of a plan which would see his council keep its borders, but work more closely with Nottingham and Derby, known as the Metro Strategy.
He said: “It’s not just councils, we want to be working much more closely with health authorities, the police, and all these sort of things.
“We are all working on the same things really, but we’re doing it in our own silos.”
Councillor Cutts has requested a meeting with the Government minister responsible for local councils to discuss the scheme.
However while those talks are in early stages, Nottingham, Derby and Gedling are in advanced stages of what they call the ‘Metro Strategy.’
This could involve the three authorities working together on issues like procurement and infrastructure, but keeping borders and some powers, similar to London boroughs.