Devolution plans ‘are a shambles’

Mirfield Library. (D541B429)
Mirfield Library. (D541B429)

Kirklees Labour has broken its promises over devolving powers to local communities, Tory leader Robert Light has claimed.

Coun Light criticised Labour’s budget plans, which were passed last week, for not devolving cash or decision-making powers to local communities or the District Committees.

The District Committees began meeting towards the end of last year as replacements of the area committees.

“Labours devolution proposals are a shambles. They devolve neither power or resources to our local communities,” said Coun Light.

“There is no legitimate argument for failing to devolve power and budgets to our districts to cover services such as streetscene, seasonal weather, parks and open spaces, highways, town and village centre management, libraries, museums and planning enforcement.”

The conservatives have submitted a motion to the next Kirklees Council meeting in March calling for devolution for Batley, Spen and Dewsbury. “Without real devolution local people will continue to have no say or influence on the services in their communities,” added Coun Light. “There will be no check on Labour’s plans to centralise every service within Huddersfield town centre and we will continue to see more libraries, community centres and local services disappear.”

The next Dewsbury and Mirfield district committee meeting is on Tuesday March 31. The date for the next Batley and Spen meeting has not yet been confirmed.