A proposal to set up regular meetings between the leaders of all political groups at Northumberland County Council has been rejected.
At last week’s full council meeting, the minority Labour administration along with the three Independent members voted against the proposal.
The proposal has been made by Conservative group leader, Councillor Peter Jackson, to help foster a spirit of partnership and co-operation in the running of the council’s business.
“It is a great shame that our fears of a one party state in Northumberland have proved to be correct,” said Coun Jackson.“Over the next four years the pressures on our county council to continue deliver all of the services that our residents need will be immense.
“Budget cuts of more than £50m will have to be found and I still maintain that we should be making our council more efficient and more effective.”
“Our council will only be successful if all parties are able to play a full part but it seems that the ruling, southeast-based Labour administration is determined not to listen to other parts of the county.
“It is a shame on our council that this sincere offer of partnership and co-operation was flatly rejected by Labour and the three Independent councillors. As well as the forthcoming budget pressures there are many issues such as the current prevarication over free car parking which we should discuss and make progress.”
“Consensus rather than confrontation is what our residents expect but, unfortunately, Labour will not listen. They are intent on pursuing their party politics ahead of the pressing needs of Berwick and indeed our county.”