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There is an Opposition on Buckinghamshire Council

June 11, 2020 10:08 AM

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The new Buckinghamshire Council was born on 1 April (perhaps someone's idea of a joke!). As we couldn't have local elections this May because of the Coronavirus, all the existing councillors from the old County Council and the District Councils are automatically councillors on Buckinghamshire Council until May 2021, when elections should finally be held.
There were 202 councillors altogether on the various previous councils but several have resigned, which reduces the number slightly to 197. They are nearly all Tories, of course, but we Liberal Democrats have no intention of letting them behave like a one-party council.
There are 18 Liberal Democrats, and we have joined with a Green, a number of Independents and two Denham Conservatives to form an Alliance group of 30 to be the main Opposition. There is also a Labour group of nine, which remains separate, and a small number of Independents who have not joined the Alliance group. The advantage of being an Alliance group of 30 is that it gives us two members on most of the committees, and means we are better able to hold the Conservative Council to account.
And that's what we mean to do - work hard, ask questions, make our voice heard, and make sure that residents are kept informed about what is going on. We won't allow Buckinghamshire to be a one-party county, even though our outdated electoral system gives the Tories many more seats than is actually justified by the number of votes they get in elections.
From the old Chiltern District Council, there are now three Liberal Democrats: Peter Jones, who represents the Ballinger, South Heath and Chartridge area; Mark Titterington, who has left the Conservatives and who represents Holmer Green; and me from Chesham. Peter Jones and Mark Titterington were both very experienced members of the Planning Committee at Chiltern District Council and will continue in that role on the new council. I have got a place on the Health and Adult Social Care Committee, which seems to me like one of the most important committees to be on at this time. I'm looking forward to it.

Alan Bacon
Liberal Democrat Councillor in Chiltern Ridges ward
Buckinghamshire Council