LETTER: Revolutionary bid for joint budget

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An effort is being made to bring together all of the political groups on Nottinghamshire County Council to collectively agree a budget for the 2016/17 financial year.

Until now, there has always been one political party in outright control, with enough votes to implement the budget of its choice.

The council is now in no overall control, so I approached Labour leader, Councillor Alan Rhodes, with a proposal that all parties should be invited together to examine the financial situation and decide whether we can identify a budget strategy we could all support. To Alan’s credit, he agreed.

This arrangement is unprecedented for Nottinghamshire County Council, but it is an option worth considering in view of the current political balance of the authority and the huge financial challenges facing local government.

We all agree that the council’s budget strategy must serve the best interests of Nottinghamshire residents, and if the political groups can achieve this by working together on this occasion, then we will do so. Rather than meeting in our individual political groups as has previously been the case, all 67 councillors will be invited to attend collective briefings by officers to discuss the way forward.

This will only work if all political groups agree.

Councillor Kay Cutts

Conservative Group Leader