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Welcome to the website of the Liberal Democrat Group on Surrey County Council

Hazel Watson Stephen Cooksey Fiona White John Orrick Ian Beardsmore Pauline Searle Will Forster David Goodwin
  • Tip Tax petition
    Article: Jan 19, 2018

    Liberal Democrat county councillors in Surrey have launched a petition calling for Surrey County Council to abolish its charges for residents disposing of DIY waste - known locally as the "Tory Tip Tax". The petition follows a consultation from the Government announcing that they oppose the principle of councils charging residents for disposing of DIY waste and will consider changing the law if councils continue to charge. Surrey County Council introduced these charges in September 2016 despite overwhelming opposition to the charges in the responses to the County Council's consultation.

  • Tory Tip Tax
    Article: Jan 16, 2018

    The Government have stated that they wish to see an end to charges by local authorities, including Surrey County Council, for residents disposing of DIY waste. A consultation released this week by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) states that "The Government's view is that residents should be able to dispose of household DIY waste free of charge" and

  • Plans kept secret
    Article: Jan 12, 2018

    The Government has published proposals calling on local authorities, including Surrey County Council, to be more open and transparent about their purchases of commercial properties for investment purposes. The consultation, which closed on December 22nd 2017, states that local authorities need to "demonstrate more transparency and openness and to make it easier for informed observers to understand how good governance and democratic accountability have been exercised", and that "local authorities need to remember that their prime duty is to deliver statutory services for local residents". The new rules, if adopted, will be introduced in April 2018 and take effect immediately.

  • Cllr Hazel Watson outside County Hall
    Article: Dec 15, 2017

    Liberal Democrat county councillors have criticised Surrey County Council's plan to set aside income derived from property acquisitions into further property speculation rather than investing in services. According to the latest budget figures, the County Council is facing an overspend of £19 million in the current financial year but is planning to set aside £3.8m of income generated from property to invest in more property, rather than take the pressure off council services which are facing cuts of £104 million pounds this year.

  • Dene Street
    Article: Dec 12, 2017

    Council plan to sell off properties still shrouded in secrecy say Surrey Lib Dems

    On Thursday 14 December 2017 the Conservative Cabinet of Surrey County Council is expected to agree to enter into a Joint Venture with an external company to redevelop the Council's own land and buildings for housing for sale and rent.

  • NHS
    Article: Dec 12, 2017

    Lib Dems call for scrutiny investigation over Surrey County Council pay off to Virgin Care

    Liberal Democrat county councillors have called for a scrutiny investigation following the disclosure that Surrey County Council have paid an undisclosed sum to Virgin Care, following legal proceedings over the awarding of a health contract.

  • Angela Goodwin & Chris Botten
    Article: Dec 5, 2017

    Liberal Democrat county councillors celebrated today after Surrey County Council unanimously backed their call to increase the level of places for pupils with Special Educational Needs within Surrey. A motion, tabled by Liberal Democrat county councillors, was accepted unanimously by all council members at a meeting today at County Hall. The County Council spends a total of £237 million on SEND services for children and young people, educates 822 SEND students outside of the county, and spends nearly £27 million on travel costs for SEND students.

  • Surrey signs
    Article: Dec 4, 2017

    Liberal Democrat Councillors on Surrey County Council are calling for an end to the council relying on members of the public to report missing or damaged road signs and instead are calling for a sign inspection policy to be developed and implemented.


    Cllr Hazel Watson, Leader of the Liberal Democrats on Surrey County Council said today:

  • Chris Botten
    Article: Nov 30, 2017

    Commenting on the letter published by OFSTED today, Councillor Chris Botten, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Children & Families, said:

    "These are very serious criticisms of Surrey County Council, 3 years after the County Council's Children's Services were inspected by OFSTED and subsequently rated as "inadequate". There is a long list of failings that have been identified: the poor quality of social work, weaknesses in managerial oversight, children not receiving the right help at the right time and, in some cases, children being at risk of harm.

  • Angela Goodwin & Chris Botten
    Article: Nov 30, 2017

    Liberal Democrats have called upon Surrey County Council to improve and expand its provision of services to children with Special Educational Needs & Disabilities (SEND). The County Council spends a total of £237 million on SEND services for children and young people, educates 822 SEND students outside of the county, and spends nearly £27 million on travel costs for SEND students. Liberal Democrat county councillors have tabled a motion, to be discussed at Council next week, calling for the Conservative-administration to invest in more SEND provision within Surrey, in order to reduce the number of placements outside of the county, as well as reducing travel costs and times for children and parents alike.