Another Council To Join WDDC and W&PBC Partnership?
7:38am 25th March 2014
(Updated 7:39am 25th March 2014)
Another council could join the already combined Weymouth and Portland, West Dorset partnership.
Councillors are being asked to approve formal talks to discuss the idea.
The ground-breaking partnership between Weymouth and Portland Borough and West Dorset District Councils has already saved £3 million.
It works, with one set of staff providing services for both local councils, with each authority as an equal partner retaining its own sovereignty, controlling its own budgets and electing its own councillors.
Now, there are talks of adding North Dorset District Council (NDDC) into the mix.
NDDC has already agreed to talks with the Borough's Management Committee.
West Dorset are considering whether to open what they call a "formal discussion" over a potential 3 way partnership.
A future collaboration between he 3 local authorities would serve 230,000 people and half the county area.
Weymouth & Portland Borough Council brief holder for Corporate Affairs and Continuous Improvement Michael Goodman said:
"We have to develop new models of local government in response to changes in the way councils are now funded, but also to be positive and seize commercial opportunities that arise in the future.
"A three-council partnership would represent over 230,000 people and half the county area, giving us a more powerful voice in both Dorset and further afield to influence positive outcomes for our residents."
If approved, talks would help develop a vision, protocol, terms of joint working and business case for a partnership.
Leader of West Dorset District Council Robert Gould said: "These are early days but our partnership delivery programme has always included future phases to work with others.
"A three council partnership would allow us to provide services more efficiently, take advantage of economies of scale and work together to become less reliant on Government funding."