Sunday, July 22, 2007

Concerns voiced over super quangos

News that the SEERA the south east England regional assembly, is to be scrapped, appears to have upset the leader of Kent County council, Paul Carter.

Regional assemblies were set up in the nineties, purpose of which was to scrutinise regional development agencies and formulate regional planning strategies, the makeup of these organisations, was similar to much of are unelected government, in that the assembly members were all appointees either from local councils other organisations and therefore not democratic in any sense of the word.

Now I find it surprising, that Paul Carter should be getting excited about the prospect of this organization being wound up, and much of the power being passed on to the SEEDA (South East England development agency).

Paul Carter expresses fears that this will result in a super quango, and is quoted as saying that the best solution would be to devolve these powers to local authorities.

The way I interpret it, is that, his concerns maybe more about control rather than any serious concerns over accountability.

In today's Kent on Sunday, there is a picture of Paul Carter praising the work of "locate in Kent" which I am fairly sure happens to be a quango, since most of its money is derived I believe from local authorities.

Were Paul Carter to suggest the abolition of all these small, organisations, otherwise known as quangos, in favour of committees within our local councils run by elected councilors, then I feel he will have a valid point.

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