Martin Redbond

Liberal Democrat Councillor for the Claydon and Barham Ward Learn more

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Ipswich unitary blocked

by martinredbond on 7 December, 2007

Ipswich’s bid to become a unitary authority leaving the rest of the county to function as two-tier (District and County) has stalled. Having given approval in the summer the Department for Communities & Local Government has now declared that the proposal from Ipswich has not yet demonstrated conclusively that it is financially sound when based on current boundaries. There are suggestions that it is the Prime Minister himself who has taken this decision.The proposal will now be referred to the Boundary Committee, who will look at the case for a unitary Ipswich, perhaps a Greater Ipswich and new proposals for the rest of the county including possible cross-border arrangements between Norfolk and Suffolk. Local governance in Suffolk is clearly back in the melting point and uncertainty once again reigns.

A unitary is a type of local authority that has a single tier and is responsible for all local government functions within its area. Typically unitary authorities cover towns or cities but may also be counties or parts of counties considered large enough to function independently. The Government has confirmed the go ahead for unitary authorities based on Cornwall, Durham, Northumberland, Shropshire and Wiltshire.

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