Negotiations Begin For City Council To Have More Powers In Deciding Future Of Ely

PUBLISHED: 13:23 14 May 2010 | UPDATED: 13:33 02 June 2010

CITY of Ely councillors have appealed to bosses at the district council to hand over more powers to help them run the city and have urged executives from both authorities to begin negotiations. At a recent meeting held between the two councils, it was rev

CITY of Ely councillors have appealed to bosses at the district council to hand over more powers to help them run the city and have urged executives from both authorities to begin negotiations.

At a recent meeting held between the two councils, it was revealed that city councillors and leading figures at East Cambridgeshire District Council (ECDC) discussed the possibility of more powers being handed over to the city.

And, in a letter mailed to ECDC chief executive John Hill last week, the former mayor of Ely, Richard Hobbs, called for formal negotiations to get underway.

Following his predecessors lead, recently invested mayor Brian Ashton said that he hoped negotiations with ECDC could begin.

"We are about to start discussions with the district council about how we may be more influential in the future development of this great city. We will also examine whether there are services provided by the district council, and maybe others, that would be more appropriately organised and operated through the city council, he said.

"During the coming year we will continue to re-structure the operations of the city council to ensure that we have the capability to take on additional tasks if this should be deemed to be the right way forward.

"In local government terms, these are exciting times and I hope that the current enthusiasm bears fruit."

At present the city council takes care of the city's cemeteries, Ely in Bloom, some aspects of planning, Christmas lights and street furniture while the district council handles a most of the major issued for East Cambridgeshire including planning, environment and tax.

A spokesman for ECDC said that at a recent meeting between the two authorities, city councillors were invited by chief executive John Hill, to submit a report about the possibility of powers being transferred for officers to consider.

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