Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles met the South East 7 group of councils to find out how they are doing more for less by working together. He visited as it was revealed the group aims to make savings of almost £75 million over the next two years.
Surrey County Council leader David Hodge said: “SE7 has already contributed to us all working even more closely together to do some amazing things. This will help us to transform services in the coming years and make huge savings.”
Latest figures reveal South East 7 expects to make savings of £73m by March 2015 through joint working, bulk buying and pooling resources such as staff.
Savings will come in areas such as highways, IT, waste, property and special educational needs services.
The local authorities involved in South East 7 cover Surrey, East Sussex, West Sussex, Kent, Hampshire, Brighton and Hove and Medway.
Each council focuses on a specific are of work. Surrey is responsible for highways.
Council leaders including Surrey’s David Hodge and East Sussex’s Peter Jones, who is also South East 7’s chairman, met with Mr Pickles before he gave a speech on the future of local government.