Diss decision on Norfolk CAB merger delayed

A decision on whether a Norfolk district's Citizens Advice Bureau should merge with a new county-wide branch has been delayed.

The Diss, Thetford and District branch of the CAB was due to decide on Monday whether to join a new Norfollk CAB to cut governance costs, but a decision was deferred because members attending the meeting at Park Hotel in Diss wanted more information on the likely impact of the merger.

Last week, the EDP revealed plans to join forces with the Norfolk CAB, formed by unifying the four districts, including Diss, Norwich and West Norfolk, North Norfolk and Yare Valley.

David Sice, chairman of the trustees with the Diss and Thetford branch, provided reassurances the move would not result in the closure of the Shelfanger Road office or any changes to opening hours or the number of volunteers.

The only change could be a reduction in the number of trustees, Mr Sice added, as there were currently 25 trustees with the four different districts and he believed there could be positives emerging from the new unified structure, which should be stronger financially than when the four districts operated separately.

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Currently, the four districts have 450 volunteers and 50 full or part-time staff providing advice and assistance with legal problems, debt and consumer issues, benefits, housing, employment and immigration.

These volunteers are based at nine offices across the county, at Diss, Norwich, Wymondham, Great Yarmouth, North Walsham, Fakenham, Attleborough, Diss, Thetford and King's Lynn.

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Mr Sice said: 'Norfolk CAB proposes to become the primary body for service delivery across the county. We hope to find our position is stronger financially as a result of the move, though it is difficult to accurately forecast what will happen.'

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