Thursday, February 11, 2010

More reactions to Exeter unitary decision

Following on from this earlier post...

Devon MPs and PPCs
  • Geoffrey Cox, Conservative MP for Torridge and West Devon, has condemned the decision as a "political fix".
  • Gary Streeter, Conservative MP for South West Devon, has said: "It will be a disaster for Exeter and for the rest of Devon, ripping the heart out of the beating body."
  • Dr Jon Underwood, parliamentary spokesman for the Liberal Democrats in Tiverton and Honiton has said "I've been assured that MPs and Lords from our party will do what they can to stop this scandalous piece of electioneering from being implemented. It isn't too late to stop the further loss of services and increased council tax."
  • I've not yet seen comments from Conservative MPs Anthony Steen (Totnes) and Angela Browning (Tiverton and Honiton) but they are known to be against the Exeter unitary option.
  • I've not yet seen comments from Alison Seabeck, Labour MP for Plymouth Devonport, but in a letter to the Boundary Committee in 2008 she endorsed the unitary Exeter model that was announced yesterday.
  • I've not yet seen comments from the Liberal Democrat MP for Torbay, Adrian Sanders. Based on Torbay's experience of being a small unitary authority, he proposed in 2008 a three-unitary model for Devon.
Exeter City Council
  • The leader of the Conservative group on Exeter City Council, Yolonda Henson, has said: "I am delighted but I feel, three months to a general election, the timing of this has been done to save Ben Bradshaw. It has been done in undue haste."
  • The leader of the Liberal group, Joan Morrish, has said: "This is a great victory for local democracy and commonsense. This is evidence of what happens when all the parties on the city council work together with one aim. We have lots of challenges ahead and need to keep the same idea for what is best for Exeter, but this is wonderful news."
  • Pete Edwards, leader of Exeter's Labour group, and chair of the unitary changeover committee, has said the county council does not need to move out of county hall just because they are in a place they don't represent any more.
  • In the Commons yesterday, Caroline Spelman, Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, described the restructuring as "expensive and undemocratic" and called for a debate in Parliament.
  • Martyn Oates, the BBC's South West political editor has some useful FAQs.