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PM Urges Localism

Date: 11/11/2010

David Cameron told civil servants on 8th November that ministers would use their departmental business plans to enable local communities, improve efficiency and increase accountability.

He said: 'Today we are turning that on its head. Instead of bureaucratic accountability to the Government machine, these business plans bring in a new system of democratic accountability - accountability to the people.

'So reform will be driven not by the short-term political calculations of the Government, but by the consistent, long-term pressure of what people want and choose in their public services - and that is the horizon shift we need.'

By reducing the actual amount of work Whitehall departments actually do, local areas will be able to fill the gap. Increasing transparency will also encourage the public to challenge Whitehall decision-making.

Mr Cameron said: 'For a long time, government's default position has been to solve problems by hoarding more power to the centre - passing laws, creating regulations, setting up taskforces. The result is that Britain is now one of the most centralised countries in the developed world.

'We will be the first Government in a generation to leave office with much less power in Whitehall than we started with. We are going to take power from government and hand it to people, families and communities - and how we will do that is set out right here in these business plans. In one of the biggest blows for people power, we're shining a bright light of transparency on everything government does.'

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