Oxfordshire County Council leader reacts to EU result

Cllr. Ian Hudspeth, Oxfordshire County Council leader. NNL-151013-104444001
Cllr. Ian Hudspeth, Oxfordshire County Council leader. NNL-151013-104444001

Oxfordshire County Council leader Ian Hudspeth has issued a statement following EU result and the Prime Minister’s resignation.

Conservative Cllr Ian Hudspeth has released a statement following the monumental events over the last 12 hours.

He said: “Following David Cameron honouring his pledge to offer a referendum on our membership of the European Union, the British people have voted to take more direct control of the decisions which affect them.

“That process must not stop at the gates of Parliament. This is an opportunity to remake our democratic system, and must be used to drive, not delay, the process of devolving power from Westminster and Whitehall to England’s cities and counties, and from those cities and counties to the towns, villages, and neighbourhoods within them.”

“The priorities of the county council will remain the same; to support economic growth, to protect the most vulnerable, and to drive efficiency in public services. To support these priorities, our work on stripping out another level of bureaucratic decision making by developing proposals for a new council for the whole of Oxfordshire will continue, as will our ambition to win a wide-ranging devolution deal from central government.”

“As we go through a period of both uncertainty and opportunity, it will be more important than ever for local partners in the public sector and beyond to work collaboratively and creatively to ensure Oxfordshire has good public services fit for the future.”

“I know David Cameron well and he is an honourable man. He has made the right choice to stand down as Leader of my party and allow a new face to lead us in our new direction. I wish him, Samantha, and their family all the best for the future, and we will of course continue to work with him as the local constituency MP.”

Councillor David Williams, Green Party leader, said: “The decision of the electorate to Leave the European Union offers a very serious challenge to economic, social and environmental progress of the UK. Our universities depend on students from the continent of Europe who now face full overseas tuition fees, and may not come to Oxford or Oxford Brookes in consequence. British collaboration with EU-funded research has been undermined.”

He added: “The County Council has the unenviable task of trying to make something positive out of the transition period after which the UK leaves the EU. Greens are urging the County Council to lobby the Government to ensure much that is valuable in legislation which originated from the EU remains in place. We refer to legislation, for example, that protects women, workers, habitats, coastlines, water, consumer standards and copyrights.”