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Public Inquiry by Thurrock Council Rejected by the Government

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Thurrock Council’s attempts to obtain financial transparency have been severely hampered by the government’s rejection of a request for a public inquiry.

Thurrock Council, which experienced financial difficulties that resulted in its official bankruptcy in 2022, had requested a public investigation as a result of citizen pressure and a unanimous council decision.

The local government minister, however, rejected the request for an investigation, claiming it would not provide important new information or knowledge of the circumstances. While acknowledging the community’s concerns, Simon Hoare MP maintained that the best ways to resolve the issues were through regular intervention and Best Value Inspection.

Thurrock Council’s structural flaws and leadership shortcomings were previously brought to light by the Best Value Inspection report, which resulted in significant borrowing and investments—including solar energy projects.

Thurrock Council has difficulties even with government funding, which includes £69 million for the next fiscal year. In an attempt to balance its budget, the council raised council tax by 8% this month after raising it by 10% in April of last year.

Thurrock has successfully lowered its total debt to £434 million, mostly by recovering investments; nonetheless, the council is not authorised to hold an independent statutory public investigation.

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