3rd September 2008
The Greens have called on Sheffield City Council to opt into the
Sustainable Communities Act, which comes into force next month. Under
the new Act, Citizens’ Panels, representing both local people and local
authorities, can be set up to make proposals on how central Government
can help promote local services and facilities.
Green Party councillor Rob Murphy said, “Local services are in decline,
as we can see with the Post Office closures. This affects communities,
especially the elderly and people on low incomes. It damages local
jobs and economies, increases traffic and pollution due to the need to
travel further; and adds to people’s feelings of exclusion.
“Proposals that Sheffield could put to the Government include keeping
essential community services such as Post Offices open, boosting small
businesses by increasing rate relief, and promoting local renewable
energy by removing barriers to the local grid.
“The Council has already agreed to support the principles of the
Sustainable Communities Act. We are now asking it to opt into the act
and to make sure that the new Community Assemblies in Sheffield include
Sustainable Communities Citizens’ Panels. These panels should be able
to ask questions of government and insist on answers, and even funding