SNC’s Marriage to Cherwell ends in Divorce
|Author: Martin Johns - Lib Dem||Published: 26th May 2018 12:53|
South Northamptonshire Council has been working closely with Cherwell District Council in Oxfordshire for several years but the disastrous events at Conservative run Northamptonshire County Council have forced an end to the arrangements. Joint working has delivered considerable savings but it was always a risk that joining with a council outside Northamptonshire could be a problem for SNC. Residents in both council areas now face the prospect of additional costs and poorer services as the two councils separate.
Commenting, Liberal Democrat Councillor Martin Johns said: “Lib Dems cautioned the Conservative Leadership that merging with Cherwell was the high risk option. The arrangement has delivered real financial savings but these could have been matched if we had merged with Daventry. Joint working with another council within Northamptonshire would have been a much safer option.”
The break-up of joint working has been caused by the Conservative Government imposing a re-organisation of local councils in Northamptonshire following the Conservatives effectively bankrupting the county council through their mismanagement. Government favours a new council based on South Northamptonshire, Daventry and Northampton Borough. This has meant Cherwell Council making the decision to end the merged arrangements with SNC.
Liberal Democrat Group Leader Councillor Chris Lofts says: “This really completes the triple whammy for our local residents. The Conservatives at SNC chose a risky merger with Cherwell Council, then their Conservative colleagues totally mismanaged NCC and bankrupted the council. Finally, the Government have now imposed a re-organisation on Northamptonshire councils that makes the SNC/Cherwell merger impossible to retain. It just shows that Conservatives do not understand local councils and the needs of local communities. In the end it all adds up to extra costs and poorer services for residents.”