Warnings of ‘turf war’ at councils over unitary plans

AVDC offices
AVDC offices

A council’s unitary plans may not be as popular with other parties as claimed.

At a meeting to announce that Aylesbury Vale District Council intends to push for a break from from Buckinghamshire, council leader Neil Blake boasted that the move had the full support of opposition leaders.

But this week some of leaders claimed that while they support the plans in theory, they do not want to align themselves with the scheme until more facts are known.

Robin Stuchbury, Labour leader at the council, said: “How can they say that no one will fall between the cracks and that no one will suffer if the services change?

“I don’t think there is anough information at this stage to give an educated judgement. Residents cannot afford vanity in this time of austerity.”

And Lib Dem leader at the council Steven Lambert said that he wants to know more too.

He said: “In the new year it will be a motion for unitary ‘in principle’ and we are happy with that. But what we cannot have is a turf war getting in the way of what is right for the residents of Buckinghamshire.”

But Phil Yerby, speaking on behalf of the council’s UKIP group praised the move.

He said: “We think it’s about time and I don’t know why this council has waited so long.

“I’ve been calling for this for the past eight years.”