Poll reveals opposition to merger plans

First published in News

A POLL of more than 600 residents in Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan has revealed strong opposition to Welsh Government plans for a merger of the two local authorities.

The poll, which was undertaken online and via telephone, found that almost two thirds oppose the proposals to merge Cardiff with the Vale of Glamorgan.

Respondents gave a range of reasons for their opposition, with one claiming that “council tax would rise”; another worried that communities in both areas would “lose local identity”; whilst another feared that “increasing the size of the local authority boundary would make councillors less accountable to their constituents".

One Vale of Glamorgan resident also expressed concern that a merger with Cardiff would lead to increased development on the Vale’s green spaces.

The poll received 608 responses - of which 396 were online - found that 63.49 percent opposed the plans to merge the Vale of Glamorgan council with Cardiff, 24.67 percent supported them and 11.84 percent were undecided or did not know.

Vale resident, regional AM, Andrew RT Davies said: "I have consistently expressed my own concerns, not just as a politician but as a resident of the Vale, over these plans.

"However, it appears that residents in both Cardiff and the Vale are far from enthusiastic about Welsh Labour’s plans to create a ‘Greater Cardiff’ authority.

“We all understand that the cost of politics needs to be brought down, but the wider Williams proposals need to be considered sensibly on a case by case basis. Clearly, these proposals are not welcomed by the vast majority of local residents.

“Politicians of all political persuasions in the Vale have expressed their opposition to these plans but it is also important to stress that Carwyn Jones’ government has no democratic mandate to press ahead with a merger.

“None of the major parties made major local government reorganisation a major commitment at the 2011 Assembly elections.”

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