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Final plans for new electoral arrangements in Kent are being submitted to The Electoral Commission today. The recommendations from The Boundary Committee for England mark the end of a review which began in August 2002. They include changes to division boundaries across the area.
Pamela Gordon, Chair of the Committee said: During summer 2003 a successful public consultation on the draft recommendations was carried out. The responses have led to us changing some of the proposals. The aim of the review has been to ensure that, as far as possible, one persons vote should have the same value as anothers. The improvements in electoral equality we are recommending today meet that objective without disrupting community interests.
The Electoral Commission is now responsible for deciding the outcome of the Committees recommendations and all further correspondence should be addressed to The Secretary, The Electoral Commission, Trevelyan House, Great Peter Street, London SW1P 2HW.
The boundaries of all divisions will be subject to change. All divisions are based on district wards, which changed as a result of the recent district council Periodic Electoral Reviews. The Committee is endorsing its draft recommendations subject to the following amendments. In Canterbury City, Dartford and Maidstone the Committee is endorsing its recommendations as final with the exception of two division name changes in each area. In Ashford the Committee proposes to transfer Bonnington Parish into Ashford Rural East division. In Dover and Swale the Committee is adopting several locally proposed divisions to provide a better reflection of community identity. In Thanet the Committee is adopting two locally proposed two-member divisions and is also proposing one division name change. In Tunbridge Wells the Committee is proposing a locally generated scheme with one amendment to improve community identity. In Gravesham, Sevenoaks, Shepway and Tonbridge & Malling the Committee is endorsing its draft recommendations as final. The Committees final recommendations are for retaining a council size of 84, representing 72 divisions, a reduction of 12. As part of its final recommendations the Committee is proposing 12 two-member divisions, two in Canterbury, two in Dover, two in Gravesham, one in Maidstone, one in Swale, three in Thanet and one in Tonbridge & Malling.
The Committees report is available on its website at www.boundarycommittee.org.uk or at council offices and at public libraries. Copies of the report can also be obtained by writing to The Boundary Committee for England, Trevelyan House, Great Peter Street, London SW1P 2HW.
Elise Cross on 020 7271 0530 or Gemma Crosland on 020 7271 0527
Out of Office hours 07789 920 414, Fax: 020 7271 0528
Notes to editors:
The Boundary Committee is a statutory committee of The Electoral Commission.