Chris Botten

A Democratic Deficit

A Democratic Deficit Last week I attended Surrey’s Health and Wellbeing Board. This committee contains representatives from patient organisations, Clinical Commissioning Groups, (CCGs), the SCC Cabinet (represented, I have to say, by three councillors who are really effective and know their brief) and Borough and District Councils. Its remit is to take a strategic view […]

Read More

Flayed Alive.

Flayed Alive. The last couple of weeks have been very difficult. Part of the problem is the intense frustration associated with failings of the system I can do little or nothing about. I am extremely upset that the Caterham Hill branch of the Children’s Centre is being evicted to less than ideal premises because the […]

Read More

Beyond Repair?

Beyond Repair? I was at a conference last week for District Councils and heard two stimulating contributions calling for councils to focus on the wellbeing of their residents. What a useful objective for us. The trouble is, despite the invention of Health and Wellbeing Boards, no body has oversight of our health and wellbeing. The […]

Read More

What we Pay for.

What we pay for. The Council Tax Conundrum This is the Council Tax setting season, when we pore over budget lines and projections and try to make sense of them for our residents. The more granular the spreadsheets, the better we can explain. Except we can’t do that for the County Council as they are […]

Read More

A Strange Feeling of Impermanence

A Strange Feeling of Impermanence. I attended a seminar this Monday morning which was led by senior figures in the Local Government Association, looking at ideas for the County Council to save money. Publicly available information tells us the following about the Council’s current position: “Over the last six years the Council has achieved annual […]

Read More

A few surprises and some shocks- now begins a very busy period.

  After the summer lull, the next ten days will see some very important developments and some significant challenges. While welcoming the change of heart with regard to the Community Recycling Centres, I am worried about what reductions in opening hours the service will face and the impact of any reductions. More significantly, the issue […]

Read More