There is ongoing debate about whether local councils should be reorganised. Austerity cuts affecting the County Council means that it’s having to cut or reduce services that are important to people, and it thinks reorganisation of the whole structure is necessary to use money more effectively.
There are two schools of thought on whether complete reorganisation is necessary.
Here is the link to the One Oxfordshire proposal supported by the leaders of the Conservative, Lib Dem and Labour groups on the County Council: it seeks to abolish the county council and the five district councils and replace them with one new unitary authority.
The City Council believes that the necessary incremental savings can be made if all existing authorities can come together and work as one combined authority, however it is likely that this can only be allowed by central government if the proposal includes a directly elected Mayor.
Here is the Oxford City Council web page article explaining the rationale for its petition against the One Oxfordshire proposal.
Disclaimer: any inaccuracy of information displayed on the above linked web pages are entirely the responsibility of the local authority concerned.
Currently the county and district councils (the city council is a district council) are split over whether reorganisation should go ahead, and what form it should take.
We urge all our residents to take part in the public consultation on the One Oxfordshire proposal, whether you are in favour of it or not – your comments will count. We are interested to hear your views on this: we think there are strengths and weaknesses to both proposals. Unitaries may be the future, but their number, size and even the principle are not yet decided and deserve wide discussion.
We think it is very important that all authorities continue to debate the issues with one another, rather than take polarised positions.