St Austell Town Council will fight against plans to move 400 council jobs from the town
ST AUSTELL Town Council has pledged to fight proposals which could see up to 400 Cornwall Council employees transferred to a new multimillion-pound office block in Bodmin.
On Monday night the town council agreed to lobby Cornwall Council against any plans to reduce the number of staff located in St Austell.
"As I understand it, Cornwall Council wants to move this on quite quickly," said St Austell mayor Steve Double.
"The speculation is that this will be decided by the Cabinet in November – which is not very far away."
He said his concerns about the future of the St Austell offices were raised following a discussion with Cornwall councillor Alex Folkes, portfolio holder for finance and resources.
"At a public meeting a couple of weeks ago, I asked Alex Folkes if he could give us a reassurance that the St Austell offices, which are a significant hub for council services and staff, would be safe.
"He basically said no, which raised my concerns about what is going on."
Mr Double said up to 400 council employees could be transferred to Bodmin under the proposed changes.
"The St Austell offices would be closed with just a small one stop shop remaining in the town," he said.
The mayor said the town council was in a strong position to fight the plans and councillors will be lobbying Cornwall Council in the coming weeks.
"We will do all we can to fight it," he said.
"All five of our Cornwall councillors are also town councillors, which puts us in a good position. Obviously, they are going to play a big part in this."
In April Cornwall Council approved plans to build a £10 million office block at the Beacon Technology Park in Bodmin, which is expected to house up to 675 council employees from across East Cornwall.
A Cornwall Council spokesman said: "As part of the budget process, the council is having to look at a range of scenarios involving a number of towns in mid and East Cornwall to make best use of its buildings and ensure value for money for council tax payers.
"No decisions have yet been made.
"Discussions will be held with members, services and staff as we develop any options."