Spotlight on spending

David Watson

Do you have you a question about how the county council proposes to spend millions on critical services for people right across Buckinghamshire during the next financial year? 

If so, the budget scrutiny select committee, which convenes next week to examine the council’s budget in detail, wants to hear from you. 

The cross-party select committee of councillors will question all Cabinet members on their spending plans during three days of hearings from Tuesday, January 8 to Thursday, January 10. Meanwhile, Chairman David Watson (pictured) wants residents to add their questions, too. 

He said: ‘I’ve always been a great champion of transparency and openness, particularly when it comes to spending public money. As a committee you can rest assured we will leave no stone unturned, but what I’d really like to encourage is questions from the public. 

‘And I can guarantee that they’ll all get an answer from the relevant Cabinet member. Of course, people can also attend if they wish – the meetings are all open to the public.’

People can pose their questions quickly and easily ahead of the three-day scrutiny either by email to or via Twitter, using the hashtag #BucksBudget. 

Mr Watson added: ‘Our job as a committee is to ensure the budget is robust and serves the needs of the county and the people. We’ll be diligent and ask the relevant questions to each Cabinet member to make sure we are spending public money prudently.’

The full programme for the three days, together with background papers, can be found using the following links:

Jan 8 –

Jan 9 –

Jan 10 –

Hearings over the three days will also be webcast online. Following the scrutiny process the committee will produce a report listing recommendations which will be presented to Cabinet on February 11. Final budget decisions will be made by the full council at its meeting on February 21.

January 6, 2019