As you may have read, heard or seen in the local media the Independent Group at the County Council has agreed to support the Conservatives to form a stable administration. This does not mean we are in coallition with them, just that we will enable them to form a Cabinet. We will also support the budget, but expect to be fully consulted about its contents.
In return we have secured “revolving” chairs of the Council – one year a Tory, the next a member of the opposition. As far as I am aware this has never before happened on OCC.
We have also ensured a majority of non Conservative councillors on the Scrutiny Committee. This means that the Tories will not have carte blanche to do as they will. As an example the ill conceived attempt to withdrew bus passes from Cholsey and Benson children last summer would never have happened under this arrangement, as it would have been thrown out by the Scrutiny Committee.
I will continue to be an independent councillor for our area, but have offered the Conservatives limited support to enable them to form an administration. I believe this is particularly important given the economic strictures we live under and will continue to experience.