BCP- You will be fully aware of the merger between the three councils and I look forward to positive dialogue(s) with the newly-formed council. Obviously, there will be teething problems until systems and processes are fully embedded, leading to improvements and impact but we won’t hesitate to ask the awkward questions should there be a need to do so
Reorganisation of Councils- I’m certain you know that the councils of Poole, Bournemouth and Christchurch will soon merge to form a polyglot. I personally don’t have strong views and welcome opportunities to share expertise, rather than duplicate services…as long as it works. My concern is that we have been very active in holding Poole council to account for many years, but worry how our voice will be heard with expansion of the council. Who, for example in Purewell, Christchurch will be even remotely interested in the ‘goings-on’ in Whitecliff or Baiter? Thinking of this, not all Poole councillors have been interested either! Nevertheless, it is more important than ever we stand as a strong association so we can be and will be heard when occasions demand that this should be so.
It would be good to provide you with the latest updates on the proposed council restructuring but the latest situation is that there is still uncertainty of how many councils will be contained within the enlarged council-if that makes sense! Currently, it is our understanding that six councils have indicated that they would like to be part of a ‘super’ council- including Poole but we’re not sure about the remaining three councils. However, more importantly we need to establish how the re-organised councils will impact on costs, services and provision- so this is unlikely to go away in the short term and we will naturally keep you informed as matters ‘progress.’
Finally, another reinforced appeal to anyone who can give a few hours each month to support our committee and take the not so massive plunge and join us. We need a strong committee more than ever before during turbulent times and any support will be welcomed
You may be aware that there are nine councils across the conurbations and Dorset. There are serious implications for funding local councils and it is essential that councils look at various options for re-structuring. Part of this programme will be to listen to the views of the electorate for whom they represent. A series of ‘roadshows’ will take place in the near future- for example 24 September in Falkland Square 11am-4pm. There are also other venues. Whether we like it or not councils play a significant part in our lives so please do contribute to the consultation either by attendance or via www.reshapingyourcouncils.uk. (I hope I’ve got this website address correct!)
Parkstone councillors are available to meet with residents on a regular basis –each at Parkstone Library. They have requested us to supply this information to you and we are happy to do so. The next meeting will be Saturday 24th September 10:30-12:00. The following meeting is on 22nd October.