The independent Local Government Boundary Commission for England is asking local people for their help to draw up a new pattern of council wards for North West Leicestershire District Council.
Following a six-week public consultation earlier this year, the Commission also announces that it is minded to recommend that the council should continue to have 38 councillors in the future.
The Commission now needs information from people and groups across North West Leicestershire to help it to produce a new pattern of wards to accommodate 38 councillors.
In drawing up new boundaries, the Commission aims to deliver electoral equality for voters in council elections so that each councillor represents roughly the same number of voters. The review also aims to ensure that the new council wards reflect, as far as possible, the interests and identities of communities across the district.
The council has also asked the Commission to conduct a ‘single-member ward review’. The Commission will therefore seek to deliver electoral arrangements for North West Leicestershire where each ward is represented by one councillor.
Max Caller, Chair of the Commission, said: “The starting point of an electoral review is for the Commission to take a view on the number of councillors who should represent the authority in future. On the evidence presented to the Commission, we are minded to recommend that North West Leicestershire should continue to have 38 councillors in future.
“We are now asking local people and organisations to help us draw up new wards for the district.
“Your views will make a difference.
“We will carefully consider all evidence that is provided during this phase of the review whoever it is from and whether it applies to the whole district or just a small part of it.”
Residents will have a further chance to have their say after the Commission publishes its draft recommendations in August 2013.
Notes to editors:
1. The Local Government Boundary Commission for England is responsible for reviewing local authority electoral arrangements, defining boundaries for local elections and the number of councillors to be elected, as well as conducting reviews of local government external boundaries and structures.
2. The aim of an electoral review is to provide for ‘electoral equality’; that means each councillor representing approximately the same number of electors. The Commission must also have regard to community identity and interests and providing effective and convenient local government.
3. The Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009 allows local authorities to request the Commission to carry out an electoral review with the aim of providing single-member wards across the whole authority. The council has asked the Commission to carry out the review with a view to delivering single-member wards across North West Leicestershire.
4. The types of questions the Commission is asking residents at this stage are:
5. Residents have from 26 March to 4 June 2013 to have their say about where ward boundaries for North West Leicestershire’s 38 councillors should be drawn. The Commission will then publish its draft recommendations in August 2013 and open a further phase of consultation with local people. New wards are scheduled to come into effect at the 2015 local elections.
6. The Commission’s decision on council size means it is ‘minded’ to recommend 38 district councillors for North West Leicestershire but is not legally bound by that number in its final recommendations and depending on the evidence submitted to it during consultation.
7. Members of the public can have their say on the new ward arrangements by writing to:The Review Officer (NW Leicestershire) Layden House 76-86 Turnmill Street London EC1M 5LG
Follow the Commission on Twitter: @LGBCE
Go directly to the Commission’s consultation portal at: consultation.lgbce.org.uk
Link to dedicated web page for the electoral review at: www.lgbce.org.uk/all-reviews/east-midlands/leicestershire/north-west-leicestershire-fer.
For further information contact the Commission’s press office on: 0207 664 8530/8534 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org