Local residents could effectively take control of alcohol licensing under reported plans to hand licensing powers to parish and town councillors. The Sunday Telegraph reports that parish and town councillors are to be given sweeping powers to run local neighbourhoods – including licensing of pubs - under “power to the people” plans to be announced today (Monday). Currently parish and town councils deal only with such minor issues as allotments, public lavatories, pathways, village halls and litter. The proposed extension would result in groups of residents taking over responsibilities that are now held by bodies such as town halls and county councils, according to the newspaper. The plans are expected to be included in the Coalition’s public services White Paper. The Sunday Telegraph quotes a Coalition source saying: “We want people to be given the green light to take over local services to ensure they are run by the local community, for the local community. “We need to end…this way of making decisions from the top down and assuming that Whitehall or county councils know hat best suits individual neighbourhoods. Parish councils can do that.”