Canvassing questions #5: The difference between District and County Councils

Another common question I get asked whilst canvassing is ‘what is the difference between the District Council and County Council?’.  Incredibly, this isn’t something that is easy to find online – so I have listed the main areas below for quick reference (with the help of Councillor Julian Daly from Harpenden West):

Summary of District Council responsibilities

  • Housing and Council tax benefits
  • Council tax collection
  • Council’s social housing maintenance / Repairs
  • Refuse collection
  • Recycling
  • Street Cleansing
  • Leisure facilities, including playgrounds & parks
  • Planning matters
  • Council car parks
  • St Albans market

Summary of County Council responsibilities

  • Care and support for older people & adults with mental health problems
  • Schools
  • Libraries
  • Roads, pavements & rights of way
  • Public transport
  • Disposal of waste (including that collected by Districts)
  • Strategic planning for transport, major new housing and mineral extraction
  • Trading standards
  • Fire & rescue
  • Registrars for births, deaths and marriage

There is more information about the County Council responsibilities on the  HertsDirect website here and a full list of District Council departments here on the St Albans District Council website.  A full list gleaned from the St Albans District Council website is below for quick reference too:

Full list of District Council departments

  1. benefits and concessionary fares
  2. electoral services
  3. allotments
  4. anti-social behaviour
  5. arts
  6. cemeteries
  7. culture
  8. community development
  9. community safety
  10. economic sustainability
  11. grounds maintenance
  12. leisure contract management
  13. heritage/museums
  14. parks/open spaces
  15. regeneration
  16. theatres
  17. tourism
  18. young people
  19. waste management
  20. street cleaning and street scene
  21. green travel
  22. climate change and sustainability
  23. private sector housing including disabled grants
  24. markets
  25. health promotion
  26. food
  27. health and safety
  28. licensing including taxis
  29. car parks
  30. parking
  31. pollution control and contaminated land
  32. overall responsibility for the management and maintenance of council owned housing, housing options and policy
  33. local development framework, planning policy, development and building control, archaeology, conservation, landscape and arboriculture

If you think I have missed any above – feel free to let me know and I’ll update the list.

Visit the ‘Canvassing questions’ for more questions and answers by clicking here

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