Will Forster

Mayor of Woking and Lib Dem County Councillor for Woking South Learn more

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Archive for the ‘Finance’ Category

Parking charges in the Surrey countryside

by willforster on 10 October, 2018

Following Surrey County Council’s decision to introduce parking charges to car parks in its countryside estate, it has been widely reported that the sites have been almost empty. Parking charges of £1.30 per hour, with a maximum charge of £5 per day, were introduced in the County Council’s car parks in the summer despite significant […]

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Fears that 40 Children’s Centres could close in Surrey

by willforster on 5 September, 2018

The Lib Dems and I have expressed concerns for the future of Surrey’s Children’s Centre provision in the light of the sudden departure of one of their leading champions and advocates from the senior team at Surrey County Council. The departure comes after plans to reduce provision were announced by the Conservative administration earlier this […]

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My Lib Dem colleagues at County Hall and I have criticised the ruling Conservative administration for recruiting a new “Business Manager” post, on a salary of more than £43,000, when at the same time planning hundreds of staff redundancies and millions of pounds of cuts to front line services. The advert, which has appeared on […]

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My Lib Dem colleagues at County Hall and I are calling for Surrey County Council to make urgent financial preparations following a recent judgement in Bristol in which a group of parents successfully challenged Bristol City Council’s decision to make deep cuts in special educational needs (SEND) provision.  Parents in Surrey have launched a similar […]

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During my meeting of the Audit and Governance Committee yesterday at County Hall, it emerged that Surrey County Council has commissioned a second report from the Chartered Institute of Public Finance & Accountancy (CIPFA) to review its financial resilience.  This follows a report commissioned in December 2016, costing nearly £25,000, which warned that the financial […]

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In a keynote housing speech today, the Leader of the Lib Dems, Vince Cable, called for tough action to be taken against empty homes. Vince Cable and the Lib Dems want to increase Council Tax on empty homes from 200% to 500% and introduce a Stamp Duty surcharge for overseas residents. As a party, we […]

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The Lib Dems and I have launched a petition calling for the recent increase in allowances for Conservative Surrey County Councillors to be reversed. The increase was voted through by Tory Councillors with four new positions of “Deputy Cabinet Member” created, each at a cost to the taxpayer of £10,000, despite the County Council planning […]

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My Lib Dem colleagues at County Hall and I have heavily criticised the Conservative administration at Surrey County Council after they awarded themselves thousands of pounds of extra allowances in a vote at Full Council earlier this week. The vote means that 4 new Deputy Cabinet positions will be created, at a cost of £40,000 […]

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The Conservatives running Surrey County Council have revealed they are planning to reduce spending on services by nearly £200 million by the end of 2019/20. The figures were released in a report to the Council’s Cabinet this week, alongside the administration’s decision to hire consultants, at an undisclosed sum, to assist with the County Council’s […]

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My Lib Dem colleagues and I are very concerned that Surrey County Council has not spent any of the income derived from its £298 million commercial property portfolio on Council services. Previously, the Conservative Cabinet Member for Property and Business Services stated that: “We also have an additional need to generate an income from our […]

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