LEADERS of Stratford and Warwick district councils are urging residents to have their say on plans for the authorities to merge.
An online survey is seeking views on the creation of a single South Warwickshire Council to carry out services such as waste collection, planning, housing, management of parks and sports facilities, licensing, business support and environmental health – currently delivered separately by the two authorities.
It follows an independent report which found a ‘strong strategic, economic, financial and operational case for merging’ including estimated financial losses of around £4-6million per year by 2025.
Warwick District Council leader Andrew Day said: “Council services touch all our lives in many ways, so it matters that we get them right. These are challenging times, that offer an opportunity to renew and update local government across south Warwickshire.
“We are focused on meeting the changing needs of communities today, to take practical steps to address the local impact of climate change and to foster new business growth.
“To do this effectively, we need to hear from our residents, community groups and businesses so we know what’s really important.”
Stratford District Council leader Tony Jefferson added: “The world is changing rapidly, and we cannot stand aside from that. With both councils facing financial challenges, we need to find solutions.
“This is an extremely important consultation that relates to vital local services and the future of our local democracy.
“This decision on whether to merge needs to be the made with the backing and consideration of the views of the wider community, it is therefore vital that as many people as possible take the opportunity to get involved.”
Visit www.southwarwickshire.org.uk/ to have a say until midnight on Sunday October 24.
The findings will be considered in a meeting in mid-December.
Copies of the proposal document and questionnaire are available at Leamington Town Hall, Stratford District Council Office and libraries in Alcester, Kenilworth, Leamington, Shipston, Southam and Whitnash.