A council meeting in Taunton has passed a motion instructing officers to work on a bid and submission to create a unitary council for Somerset.
The motion, submitted by council leader Cathy Bakewell, instructs the council to prepare the bid by January 2007.
The bid will then be submitted to the government. If it gives the go-ahead, five local councils would be abolished.
These would be Sedgemoor, Mendip, South Somerset, Taunton Deane and West Somerset councils.
A unitary authority is a council which runs all services in its area.