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Local Government: Reorganisation

Volume 502: debated on Wednesday 16 December 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what timetable has been set for the restructuring of local government in Norfolk, Suffolk and Devon. (306751)

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government when he expects to lay before Parliament an order to implement unitary local government in Devon, Norfolk or Suffolk. (306471)

As I told the House on 8 December, Official Report, column 13WS, until 19 January 2010 representations may be made to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State about the Boundary Committee's advice on unitary proposals for Devon, Norfolk and Suffolk, and about the unitary proposals made by Exeter, Ipswich and Norwich.

Thereafter, recognising the need to end uncertainty, the Secretary of State intends to move forward as quickly as practicable. Having regard to the Boundary Committee's advice, all the representations he receives, and all other relevant information available to him, he intends to take his statutory decisions as to whether to implement, with or without modification, any of the unitary proposals before him, or to take no action.

If the Secretary of State decides to implement a proposal, he will lay before Parliament a draft of an order which, if approved, he will make to give effect to his decision.