What we don't do
The structure of local government can be quite bewildering. In an ideal world, public services would be provided by one organisation, but the reality is much more complicated!
There are various types of council: parish, town, district, borough, county, and unitary.
We are a district council and we provide a range of services for the people who live and work in South Oxfordshire and those visiting the area. We collect council tax and use around 10 per cent of what we collect to help pay for these services.
Around 80 per cent of the council tax collected goes to Oxfordshire County Council whose services include education, libraries, social services, roads, some waste disposal (such as recycling centres) and fire services. Parish and town councils receive council tax for services such as informal recreation areas, footpaths, allotments and bus shelters. The remainder goes to Thames Valley Police.
County Councils are responsible for:
- education and schools
- highways and (potholes, tourism signs, gritting)
- public rights of way
- libraries, recreation, arts and museums
- social services and youth service
- strategic planning and some planning applications (mainly mineral extraction and waste disposal sites)
- trading standards
- waste recycling centres
Parish and town councils are responsible for:
- bus shelters
- footpaths and car parks
- public conveniences
- recreation, arts and museums.
Last reviewed: 08 - 07 - 2015