Local Government

10th November 2017

For those of my constituents struggling to pay the bills, and reliant on our local public services, it’s no longer acceptable to go on cutting frontline services, whilst spending so much on the (too often) high salaries, gold-plated pensions, and duplicating back office bureaucracies which soak up vast sums of our precious public money.

As you will have seen in my ‘Protecting Frontline Services’ statement last month, and in my ‘Devolution’ statement last November, I have long been calling for urgent reform in this area.

Currently in Norfolk we have 1 County Council AND 7 District, Borough and City Councils as well as 5 NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups, and multiple NHS Trusts (including the ‘inadequate’ Norfolk and Suffolk Mental Health Trust) and the East of England Ambulance Service.

Do we really need all of these different bodies?

I believe that, with better joined-up planning of housing, road, rail, broadband and public service delivery etc, we can ensure a better growth model for our area – with new funds, and which prevents the wrong sort of ‘development’ being forced upon us. 

Imagine if, instead of 8 councils, multiple NHS bodies and countless quangos, we had one or two organisations which had responsibility for ALL of the local services in our area – a One Stop Shop for all your housing, benefits, training, and environmental and occupational health needs. Equally, imagine if there were just two unitary bodies - East and West - in Norfolk, unlocking huge efficiency savings that could then be reinvested in the frontline. (Norfolk County Council alone are spending £23 million on administration this financial year).

Much has been written about the future of local government in Norfolk, and the local services that they provide, in the past few days. With an increasing elderly population and more pressure on resources than ever before, we simply cannot go on like this.

The time has come for all of us in this area to come together fast and agree on a new model, one that puts our constituents first.

‘Protecting Frontline Services’: http://georgefreeman.co.uk/content/protecting-frontline-services

‘Devolution’: http://georgefreeman.co.uk/content/devolution

 

Attleborough Neighbourhood Plan

Attleborough is facing all the familiar challenges of a historic market town coping with new housing and the need to effectively combine growth with heritage and a strong local community.

Watton Neighbourhood Plan

Neighbourhood Plan
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Necton - Vattenfall Consultation

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Publications


George Freeman: New technology can save the NHS

21st September 2015 There is a truth in our society that we can no longer ignore. With a rapidly ageing population, the UK faces a new demographic reality. | ConservativeHome



George Freeman: How technology will transform care and debate about our NHS

18th January 2015 The technological revolutions which have transformed so much of our economy and society are about to transform healthcare. | ConservativeHome


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