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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
  • House of Commons Parliamentary Debate (Catherine Bebbington/Parliamentary Copyright http://www.parliament.uk/site-information/copyright/use-of-parliamentary-photographic-images/)
    Article: Feb 8, 2018

    Liberal Democrat county councillors have criticised Surrey's 11 Conservative MPs after they all voted in favour of the Local Government Finance Settlement in the House of Commons on Wednesday 7th February. The Settlement sets out the level of funding from central government to local authorities for the next financial year and has been heavily criticised for not providing adequate funding to councils to provide essential services. All 9 Liberal Democrat county councillors in Surrey had written to the 11 MPs asking them to vote against the Settlement but no Conservative MP in Surrey spoke in the debate and all voted in favour.

  • Stephen Cooksey
    Article: Feb 7, 2018

    A petition set up by Liberal Democrat county councillors calling on Surrey County Council to axe its charges on residents disposing of DIY waste has attracted over 1000 signatures in just over 2 weeks. The petition was set up after the Government, as part of a wider consultation on fly-tipping, stated that "The Government's view is that residents should be able to dispose of household DIY waste free of charge" and "The Government will consider clarifying the law if councils continue to charge for disposal of reasonable amounts of DIY waste". The County Council introduced the unpopular charges, dubbed the "Tory Tip Tax", in September 2016 and earlier in January this year ended the daily allowance for local residents to dispose of waste for free.

  • money
    Article: Feb 5, 2018


    Liberal Democrat county councillors in Surrey have written to the county's 11 MPs asking them to vote against the Local Government Finance Settlement in Parliament on Wednesday 7th February. The Settlement sets out the level of funding from central government to local councils for the next financial year, and has been widely criticised for failing to address the financial problems that many councils face.

  • County Hall
    Article: Jan 23, 2018

    Liberal Democrats on Surrey County Council have criticised the Conservative-administration for budget proposals containing £54m of further cuts to services and a 6% council tax rise. The budget recommendations will be approved by the Council's Conservative Cabinet on Tuesday 30th January, and then by the County Council on Tuesday 6th February.

  • 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.