Ruffley slams Local Government Review as new parliamentary figures reveal Boundary Committee spending approaching £500,000

Thursday, 4 February, 2010

David Ruffley MP has hit out at the Government's investigation into the reorganisation of local government in Suffolk. New parliamentary figures, revealed during David's questioning of Gary Streeter MP, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, show that to date the Boundary Committee has spent £463,950 to date.

The Government is widely expected to shelve the plans for local government reorganisation in Suffolk when an announcement is made during the next few days and the Conservatives have already announced they would overturn any decision to introduce unitary councils.

David Ruffley today said:

'If, as expected, the Government shelves plans to introduce unitary councils in Suffolk then the Boundary Committee will have spent over £460,000 on nothing. These new parliamentary figures reveal just the Boundary Committee's expenditure and do not even touch on the huge number of man hours put in by local council officials.

'Even if the Minister decides to proceed with the reorganisation the parliamentary time table is incredibly tight and there is no certainty that Orders will be approved in time.

'Given the uncertainty of the timetable and the looming General Election I am staggered that the Boundary Committee's review was permitted to go on this long. £460,000 would pale into insignificance if compared to the colossal costs of reorganising local government and this is one of reasons an incoming Conservative government would abandon it.

'It's a shame that the Government didn't see sense sooner and save tax payers from this staggering waste of public funds.'