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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
  • Chris Elmer
    Article: Apr 10, 2017

    Commenting on his recent selection as Liberal Democrat county council candidate for Walton at the elections in Surrey on May 4th 2017, former Elmbridge Conservative Councillor Chris Elmer said today:

    "Here in Surrey I became disillusioned with the Conservative administration while I was still a Conservative Elmbridge Borough Councillor. When as a member of the same political group my efforts on behalf of my ward residents were frustrated at every stage, something is very wrong. They have had control for too long and become both complacent and arrogant - so I am very clear that Surrey needs a fresh start with the Liberal Democrats.

  • Stephen Cooksey
    Article: Apr 10, 2017

    Liberal Democrats have welcomed the news that the Conservative Secretary of State for the Environment Food & Rural Affairs, Andrea Leadsom MP, has called upon councils to scrap their charges for disposing of household waste at Community Recycling Centres (CRCs). Conservative-run Surrey County Council brought in the unpopular charges in September 2016 despite massive opposition from Liberal Democrat county councillors and residents.

  • ballotbox
    Article: Apr 6, 2017

    Surrey Liberal Democrats have unveiled a full slate of 81 candidates across every division in Surrey to take on the Conservative-administration at County Hall in May's elections - the only opposition party to do so.

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

  • Tory Tip Tax
    Article: Apr 5, 2017

    Liberal Democrat county councillors in Surrey are delighted that following a question in the House of Lords by Lib Dem Environment spokesperson Baroness Kate Parminter, it has again been confirmed that DIY waste should be disposed of for free.

    The Conservative Minister Lord Bourne, stated in a written answer on 20th March 2017 that DIY waste is household waste and should therefore be disposed of for free. However Conservative-run Surrey County Council continues to charge for the disposal of waste from DIY claiming that it is not household waste.

  • Cllr Hazel Watson
    Article: Mar 28, 2017

    Liberal Democrats have condemned proposals for Surrey County Council to dramatically increase its property investment portfolio of commercial buildings , whilst at the same time removing the opportunity for scrutiny before decisions are taken. Currently, proposals to purchase commercial properties are brought before the county council's Cabinet for decision, albeit in private, whereas under the new arrangements the Cabinet would receive information on purchases after the decision has been taken.

  • Fair Council Tax
    Article: Mar 28, 2017

    Liberal Democrat councillors have strongly criticised the Conservative-run County Council's plans to axe millions from essential services for Surrey residents, which were finally revealed today.

    Road safety and highways budgets will be hit as millions of pounds are taken away from essential Surrey services, and there will be a £735K reduction in the public transport budget as bus services are cut or removed altogether. The Council also plans to save over £1m by reducing the number of the well-used Community Recycling Facilities (CRCs) in the county, making it harder for people to recycle and increasing the risk of fly-tipping.

  • County Hall
    Article: Mar 28, 2017

    Commenting on the news that Cllr David Hodge has unilaterally given notice for Surrey County Council to leave the Local Government Association (LGA) in a year's time, Cllr Hazel Watson, Leader of the Liberal Democrats on Surrey County Council, said today: 

    "I am appalled by this decision. The Local Government Association is the key organisation within local government which enables the county council to lobby central government and make its case for resources and funding. The LGA has helped Surrey to save money, enabling the county council to recover millions of pounds back after the Icelandic banking crash. The county council needs a voice at the top table and this short sighted move takes that voice away. Only three councils in the country are not members of the LGA, so we are moving from the membership of a large and influential group to an isolated position on the fringes.

  • censored
    Article: Mar 23, 2017

    Conservative-run Surrey County Council has been forced to release a damaging financial report which warned in December 2016 that a 15% council tax referendum was "highly likely to fail". The report, produced by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance & Accountancy (CIPFA), cost nearly £25,000 and was commissioned in December but was only released to councillors on March 21st 2017, six weeks after the Council's budget meeting.

  • Is your Local School Losing Out?
    Article: Mar 22, 2017

    Liberal Democrat Councillors have successfully called for Surrey County Council to oppose the Government's funding proposals which could leave schools in Surrey with a £37m hole in their budgets by 2019/20.

    It follows the release of a letter from a Surrey Headteacher warning his local Conservative MP that schools in Surrey may be forced to implement a 4-day week.

  • Cllr Hazel Watson outside County Hall
    Article: Mar 21, 2017

    Cllr Hazel Watson said today:

    "Today's vote has denied the residents of Surrey the fresh start that was so desperately needed. It does not solve the excessive secrecy within the Council, which has been the hallmarks of Cllr Hodge's leadership, nor does it repair the Council's damaged reputation with the people it was elected to serve. Instead it means the continuation of a secretive culture at County Hall which serves its own interests, and those of the Conservative Party, rather than those of Surrey residents.