Cabinet endorses joint working between Bournemouth and Poole


Posted on Wednesday 19th July 2017

It is expected that continuing quality services and large savings will result after a proposal to establish a joint officer structure between Bournemouth and Poole moved a step forward.

Cabinet members in Bournemouth today (July 19) recommended that the Council agree in principle to create a single staff structure providing all services across both councils. Poole Council agreed the same proposal in their Cabinet meeting last week. 

The partnership would be amongst the first of its kind nationally involving two unitary councils.

It would see both councils served by a single, integrated officer team, delivering services to more than 340,000 residents, 10,000 businesses and over 8 million visitors across Bournemouth and Poole.

Importantly, both councils would retain their own sovereignty, identity and democratic processes under the proposals. Each council would also continue to set its own priorities and budget.

Bournemouth Council Leader, Councillor John Beesley said: “The two councils have a strong track record of working together to deliver services. Through an extended period of budget constraints, Bournemouth and Poole must save a further £27.8m between 2018 and 2021. Staying as we are is not an option. Work is already underway to create joint services for libraries, tourism and seafront operations. A single corporate services team providing important back-office functions, including finance, HR, IT, legal and other support teams, for both councils will also be created by April 2018.”

Cllr Beesley added: “Creating a single staffing structure serving both councils would help us achieve the savings we must make and would also lay the foundations for a new unitary council for the conurbation should the Government approve our Future Dorset proposal.” 

Both councils will consider more detailed proposals in a further report before making a final decision to go ahead.

-ends-

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