Ye Gods! Is Boris visiting us – because like his Tory MP’s – he’s getting worried?

No wonder his hair is standing on end being dragged down to Angie’s patch? Or did he drop in on Surrey to trouser another couple of millions from developers to boost Tory’s coffers?

 Declarations released by the Electoral Commission show the firms gave £891,984 to Tory central office and eight local associations – a sizeable chunk of the £6,418,295 the party reported receiving in the first three months of 2021.

It comes as the government prepares to launch sweeping changes to the planning system that will remove communities’ right to object to inappropriate individual developments in their area.

The county council elections have given the Tories one hell of a fright – so much so that have dragged the boss man down to smooth the fevered brows of Surrey’s worried wealthy. Brows that are thankfully already pretty smooth with a good dose of Botox?

The Prime Minister and Surrey County Council’s leader Tim Oliver have now revealed their current visions of local government. Do they match up? Well, not quite!

Surrey County Council was not misled over unitary bid, said Boris Johnson on his recent visit.

However, he’s been buzzing feverishly around the county in an attempt to round up the flock in his best sheepdog mode after they ran amok and changed sides in the May elections.  Don’t you worry Angie he cried, we’ll soon whip the little bu**ers back into shape?

The electorate of Surrey sent a strong message to the Tory-controlled county council who had and still are,  eager to create a behemoth unitary authority. A bid that would have seen the end to Surrey’s 11 borough and district councils including ‘Your Waverley which is now pitching its lot in with Guildford Borough.

Cllr Oliver says he’s not keen on the idea of creating extra layers of governance, which conflicts with his desire for greater efficiency, and he thinks the powers of a Democratically Elected Mayor could be carried out just as well by a county leader. Well, he wouldn’t he? 

“We already have a democratic mandate as county leader,” he said.

Surrey County Council

So there you have it in Surrey’s Game of Thrones – Tim Oliver the Leader of Surrey County Council wants to be The DEM of Surrey – Simples. However, he must have missed the results of the ~May elections. So perhaps it is down to the Waverley Web to remind him of what the electorate thought of SCC and his empire-building ambitions.

The future for Surrey County Council is not looking quite so blue.

The fight to stop Surrey County Council’s power grab has begun.

Cllr Oliver  says Mr Johnson appears to be amenable to his idea: But what the Prime Minister actually said was: 

it is up to Surrey residents to decide the form of local government they want. “It’s different strokes for different folks.

“I don’t want to impose a single cookie cutter type formula on every area, some areas will have different models. But what I do want is strong, active, dynamic local leadership.”

This was echoed by Guildford MP Angela Richardson, who said: “I’ve had lots of conversations with the [local government] secretary of state and he’s very much of the view that it’s got to be driven locally; it’s not a top-down approach, it’s very much what local people want.”

Here she goes again – name dropping again – so if that’s the case, perhaps take note of the local borough and county council election results Angie. Because the voting fodder is beginning to wake up and smell the coffee and say what they want, what they really, really want! 

But the SCC leader who spent/wasted £250,000 of our money on his little vanity project is still convinced that what we all want is one, great big Surrey Unitary Authority. Giving local people little or no say, in what goes on. Can you imagine what will occur if Surrey controls all those planning applications in our countryside? God help us all?

He says:

“There is no reason why our great counties cannot benefit from the same powers we have devolved to city leaders so that they can take charge of levelling up local infrastructure.

Levelling up Local Infrastructure, he has to be joking?

He is kidding, isn’t he?  Is he talking about our roads, awful highway information on the recent badly planned road improvements that bear no resemblance to what and when they actually happen! Or perhaps he is he talking about the Run Common Road between the A281 and the Guildford Road At Grafham near  Cranleigh? A bridge that has been shut for two years – due to badgers! Pull the other one please Cllr Oliver. Your residents aren’t mushrooms, growing in the dark, ready to have a barrel load of manure thrown over them.

We could talk about the closure and downgrading of the recycling centres and the children’s centres all over Waverley and Surrey. Perhaps even the schools that haven’t been built, in areas where there is burgeoning development. Or perhaps like the school you wanted to close in Godalming? And the disgraceful waste of public money all £57m plus on Blightwell in Farnham and its 28 un-let shops, an ugly development that is destroying our town. Or perhaps you will cut the roadside verges before the growth meets in the middle?

But we won’t reel off any more, we want to save our breath and use our energies at the ballot box.

He also said:

Surrey County Council is already involved in deciding which NHS services to buy, through the Surrey Heartlands integrated care system.

OMG! The next thing he will be wanting is to run the NHS. After presiding over a county council that is failing in Adult Social Care – and its children’s services. Beam us up, Scottie?


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