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The battle for Rutland

Rutland County Council is a unitary authority will all its seats up for election tomorrow. The Conservatives have a big majority with 18 seats against two for the Lib Dems and six others. While Labour may make strides elsewhere their prospects for a breakthrough in Rutland are impeded by their failure to have put up any candidates. This does seem to reflect a more general lack of election fever in Rutland with several wards uncontested.

The Council has been looking for saving by turning off some street lights and serving notice to quit on the Local GovernmentAssociation. Volunteers are being asked to come forward to help maintain library opening hours. Staff training is being reduced. Some bus services (where the subsidy is as much as £11.40 per passenger) as being withdrawn. Other savings include cuts in consultancy spending, more shared services and more contracting out.

While the Council has complained for some time about its grant settlement relative to other councils (don't we all). Maybe they have a point. What is beyond dispute is that it does have an exceptionally high Council Tax of £1,653.52.


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