LANCASHIRE County Council will write to the Government and say that the proposal for a Bay unitary authority fails to meet two of the three main tests that will form the basis of local government reorganisation in Cumbria.

Under the proposal, Barrow Borough Council, Lancaster City Council and South Lakeland District Council would be replaced with a single-tier local authority for the area.

Minutes from an extraordinary full council meeting held virtually on Thursday outline the Government’s ‘three main tests that will form the basis of the considerations of the Secretary of State regarding local government reorganisation in Cumbria and North Yorkshire’.

These are:

1 – Whether it will improve local government services.

2 – Whether there is a good deal of local support in the round for the proposal.

3 – Whether the proposed new areas cover a credible geography.

The minutes say the Bay proposal meets number three but fails one and two.

“Test one because there has been no detailed analysis of the service implications of its proposal, and there is no evidence of the legacy impact on the rest of Lancashire,” it is stated.

“Test two because there has been no consultation with Lancashire (outside of Lancaster) on their views on the Bay proposal, and indeed no consultation with Lancaster residents based upon the essential information set out below.

“It would therefore be inappropriate to support the Bay proposal in the absence of a full analysis of any risk to vital services it might entail.”

It was resolved that the the county council would write to the Government saying that only the ‘single Cumbria’ proposal for local government reorganisation – and therefore not the Bay proposal – met the test requirements.