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Call You and Yours with Julian Worricker - An opportunity to contribute your views to the programme call 03700 100 444 or email youandyours@bbc.co.uk.

The new government has put town halls in the front line of both cuts and reforms.

They have shaved millions off budgets and they say they intend to put citizens in control of their own lives, communities and local services by inviting them to have a greater say over council activities.

It seems likely that thousands of schools will opt out of local authority control while council tax payers will be encouraged to become involved in considering planning, transport and have the right to trigger a referendum on policy. Local government may never be the same again.

But is this a good thing? If what goes on in our local schools or planning departments is no longer under the full control of our elected representatives does that not diminish local democracy?

We all know there will be less money, so perhaps a consequence of integrating citizens more closely in the decision making process is that those with the loudest voices and deepest pockets will be allowed to trample over the interests of people less well able to represent their views and interests on their own account.

Perhaps you feel that town halls have long been centres of vested interests and a little bit of people power would do local democracy a world of good, compelling our local politicians to think twice before spending our money on hare-brained schemes or imposing unpopular developments on communities.

Call 03700 100 444 or email youandyours@bbc.co.uk.

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57 minutes

Last on

Tue 1 Jun 2010 12:04

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