25 September 2009

Somerton - Bureaucracy Central?

With the purchase of the Tin Dunny, it has occurred to me that Somerton might ask itself just how accessible Somerton Town Council is to the Community of Somerton. In the 'good old days', when the Town Council was based at the Parish Rooms, it was possible to walk in and see the Town Clerk. Today, with the Council offices at the Tin Dunny, is the Town Council more or less accessible? Far less would be my guess. There is also the problem that the Council offices now seem to be locked up most of the time and its hard to assess just what sort of access the community are being given, setting aside the hike up to the Dunny itself.

Looking back at some of the statistics for South Somerset District, the following is a list of the Town Councils where the population is over 1000 persons (where possible, linked to their web presence):

Yeovil Without
South Petherton
Milborne Port
Tatworth and Forton
Castle Cary
Curry Rivel
West Coker
Stoke Sub Hamdon
Huish Episcopi
East Coker
Abbas and Templecombe
Combe St Nicholas
Kingsbury Episcopi

As you can see, Somerton comes 7th on that list and it would be interesting were members of Somerton's Community to find out what sort of access to their Town Council other communities enjoy. How much are other communities paying in Administrative overheads? How many of SSD's councils require a full-time Clerk with part time administrative support? How many of SSD's town or parish councils spend upwards of 25% of their Precept on administration?

Of course, I don't have to remind you that Cllr Canvin made a big play in his 'election literature' (the 'non-election' of over 2 years ago) of his commitment to fighting bureaucracy wherever he finds it. Obviously he doesn't pay much attention to Somerton.

Till next time, may your bureaucracy fighting God look over you and keep you safe.