Strength in unity – or loss?

07th December 2017

Councils are looking at going beyond shared services to merging to form new authorities. What does this mean for finance and democratic accountability?

When residents in Suffolk Coastal and Waveney were asked whether their councils should merge, there was some surprise the question was even being put to them.

Many were under the impression that, after nearly a decade of the district councils sharing staff and services, they were already a single local authority. The councils have shared a chief executive since 2008 and, between 2010 and 2016, merged all their departments.

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