4 Dec 2008

Time for the Sustainable Communities Act

Transition Stroud has called for letters to be sent calling on our District and County Councils to adopt the Sustainable Communities Act,

Photo: Ebley Mill viewed from Randwick

David Drew MP was one of the leading instigators of this potentially radical piece of legislation - Caroline Lucas Green MEP and Green party leader was also a key player - many other campaigners have also pushed this hard - indeed some 3 years ago Greens held a meeting in Stroud to push this through - since then we have had various letter writing campaigns and more - it has been astonishing to see it get so far - indeed could almost restore faith in politics!! Now we need to make it work.

Locally the Leader of the District Council, Chas Fellows has made positive statements about the Act but he notes that he wants to understand the implications more before signing. Green party councillors have put a motion to the next Full Council on 16th Dec (see below) - correction I meant 21st January - the December meeting is only re canal - already 25 local authorities have now chosen to take part, including Birmingham (the largest council in England), Norfolk, Brighton and Hove and South Tyneside. You can get more info and see a map of the councils which have already decided to take part on Unlock Democracy here.

Sustainable Communities Act

That Stroud District Council

(i) supports the bottom up process in the Sustainable Communities Act designed to allow local authorities and their communities to drive the help that central government gives in promoting thriving, sustainable communities;

(ii) notes that the Act gives local authorities the power to

• make proposals to government on the action and assistance government must take or give to promote sustainable communities, and
• argue for a transfer of public money and function from central to local control;

(iii) notes that the Act defines the sustainable communities broadly, that definition having the 4 aspects of

• the improvement of the local economy,
• protection of the environment,
• promotion of social inclusion, and
• participation in civic and political activity;

(iv) notes that reasons for a local authority choosing to use the Act include gaining new assistance from government, determining that assistance, being able to argue for transfers of public monies from central to local control and involving citizens in democracy.

(v) resolves to use the Act; and to inform central Government and the local media of this decision;

Proposed by: Cllr Sarah Lunnon
Seconded by: Cllr Martin Whiteside

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