The independent Local Government Boundary Commission for England (LGBCE) has published its final recommendations for new electoral arrangements for Staffordshire County Council.
Today’s publication follows a 10-week public consultation on its draft proposals and draws new boundaries for each electoral division in Staffordshire. The draft recommendations, published in May 2011, provided for a council of 62 county councillors (the same as current arrangements) and the Commission today confirms that figure in its final recommendations.
The Commission’s final report also confirms a pattern of 58 single-member and two two-member electoral divisions across the county.
Max Caller, Chair of the Commission, said, “We’re extremely grateful to the people of Staffordshire who took the time and effort to send us their views. The Commission considered every piece of evidence it received before finalising these recommendations.
“In response to the views submitted to us during the consultation, we are proposing some changes to the proposals we put forward in May. In East Staffordshire Borough, for example, we have decided to alter our draft proposals which would have split the Parish of Stretton across three electoral divisions. Instead, we are proposing a Horninglow & Stretton division with an alternative boundary with neighbouring Dove division. Similarly, we have also accepted the arguments put to us for an alternative boundary for Uttoxeter Rural division which would mean including the parishes of Hoar Cross and Newborough in the Needwood Forest division and transferring Draycott Parish into Uttoxeter Rural electoral division.
“In South Staffordshire, the Commission was also persuaded by the evidence presented to it that it should amend its draft proposals for Penkridge and Brewood. In our final recommendations, we have included a proposal that would keep the town of Penkridge together in a single division.
“In Stafford Borough, we were persuaded to adopt the Council’s proposals for the town as we agreed that they were an improvement on the Commission’s draft recommendations in terms of delivering electoral equality and representing community identities as well as providing for a pattern of divisions that would promote effective and convenient local government.
“Overall, our recommendations for Staffordshire will deliver electoral equality for voters across the county where the value of your vote is similar regardless of where you live in the county. We also believe that our final recommendations reflect, as far as possible, the identities and interests of local communities across Staffordshire.”
The proposed new arrangements must now be implemented by Parliament. A draft Order – the legal document which brings into force the recommendations – will be laid in Parliament in the next few months. The draft Order provides for the new electoral arrangements to come into force at the next county council elections in May 2013.
For further information contact the Commission’s press office on: 0207 664 8530
or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Cannock Chase – seven members.
East Staffordshire – eight members.
Lichfield – eight members.
Newcastle-under-Lyme – nine members.
South Staffordshire – eight members.
Stafford – nine members.
Staffordshire Moorlands – seven members.
Tamworth – six members.