|"The thought of letting the occupants of Fortress Lampton be even less fettered than they are now is very scary. I always have the impression that the permanent staff there do their own thing whatever the "local people who we elect for good or ill" think about it."|
I think the point you are missing is that because local councils have had so many powers taken away and not been able to contribute to their own vision. They have been effectively overseen by the likes of Eric Pickles and Michael Gove, they've got to the point where they are wary of doing much that brings the wrath of the mighty at Westminster down on them, resulting in yet more restrictions to follow. Local councillors like many need to be as they say,'empowered' and confident in their decision making and re-learn not having to defer constantly to professional officers. Officers should be there to advise and support not to make decisions, some it has to be said, may think they are all-knowing and fail to see the dividing line between being an elected representative and advocate and being paid for their own particular expertise. Luckily they are in the minority, but it can happen. It perhaps is this that leads to the view you take, most people of all political persuasions want to do what is best for their local area and residents to make life better, they need to be able to do just that without ideological claptrap interfering from above. Local councils have to be masters of their own decisions and know the consequences of failing to deliver.