Councils to work together

The newly-elected leader of North Lincolnshire Council, Councillor Liz Redfern, met with the leader of East Riding of Yorkshire Council, Councillor Stephen Parnaby, OBE, to explore the possibility of working together.

It is with a view to improving services for residents and bringing financial savings for both authorities.

Initial talks have taken place with senior councillors and they are now to establish a working group where all possibilities will be looked at.

Councillor Parnaby explained: “Many small district councils are already sharing some services, but we believe this could be a first with two large unitary councils looking to work closely together.

“It will be a huge challenge but an exciting one, building on our excellent working relationship.”

Councillor Redfern added: “Both councils have a great deal in common and it will give us a great opportunity to share back office provision as well as expand front line services, but potentially much more.

“We are in unprecedented times where we have to look imaginatively at funding public services, so the timing is of the essence.

“However, in this context, it is important to retain our own unique identities, but I hope we can each bring economies that benefit our residents in each of our respective councils.”

Both leaders stressed that in any change the residents would experience even more tailored services and their prime task is an overall reduction in expenditure through the economies of scale, not a compromise in service.