The independent Local
Government Boundary Commission for England is asking people across Cherwell district
to comment on its draft proposals for new council ward boundaries.
A ten-week public
consultation on the recommendations begins today and will end on 16 February
2015. The consultation is open to anyone who wants to have their say on new council
wards, ward boundaries and ward names across the district.
The Commission’s draft
recommendations propose that Cherwell District Council should have 48
councillors in the future, two fewer than the current arrangements. The
recommendations also outline how those councillors should represent 16 three-member
wards across the district.
The full recommendations and
detailed interactive maps are available on the Commission’s website at www.consultation.lgbce.org.uk and www.lgbce.org.uk. Hard copies of the
Commission’s report and maps will also be available to view at council
buildings and libraries.
Max Caller CBE, Chair of the Commission,
said: “We are publishing proposals for a new pattern
of wards across Cherwell district and we are keen to hear what local people
think of the recommendations.
“Over the next ten
weeks, we are asking local people to tell us if they agree with the proposals
or if not, how they can be improved.
“Our review aims
to deliver electoral equality for local voters. This means that each councillor
represents a similar number of people so that everyone’s vote in council
elections is worth roughly the same regardless of where you live.
“We also want to
ensure that our proposals reflect the interests and identities of local
communities across the district and that the pattern of wards can help the
council deliver effective local government to local people.
“We will consider
all the submissions we receive whoever they are from and whether your evidence
applies to the whole district or just part of it.
The Commission wants to hear
as much evidence as possible in order to develop final recommendations for Cherwell
District Council. If you would like to make a submission to the Commission,
please write or email us by 16 February 2015:
The Review Officer (Cherwell)
Local Government Boundary
Commission for England
76-86 Turnmill Street
London EC1M 5LG
Follow us on Twitter @LGBCE
Have your say through the
Commission’s consultation portal: www.consultation.lgbce.org.uk
Link to the dedicated web
page for the Cherwell electoral review:
For further information
Press Office: 020 7664 8530/8534
Notes to editors:
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 Commission is carrying out an electoral review of Cherwell
District Council to deliver electoral equality for local voters. The district
currently has relatively high levels of electoral inequality where some
councillors represent many more, or many fewer, voters than other elected
members in the district. The electoral review will re-draw ward boundaries so
that each councillor represents roughly the same number of voters; that
boundaries reflect the identities of local communities; as well as helping the
council to deliver effective local government to citizens.
The types of
questions the Commission is asking residents at this stage are:
a. Do the proposed wards reflect local communities?
b. How do you think the proposals can be improved whilst
maintaining electoral equality?
c. Are the names of the proposed wards
4. For councils, like Cherwell, that hold elections in
three years out of every four, the Commission has a responsibility, set out in
legislation, to devise a pattern of three-member wards across the whole
authority. Such a ward pattern means that every elector would have the same
opportunity to vote in local elections each time they are held. However, the
Commission is able to move away from a uniform pattern of three-member wards –
on a ward by ward basis - if it believes an alternative arrangement would
better meet its other statutory criteria: to deliver electoral equality for
voters, to reflect the interests and identities of local communities and to
promote effective and convenient local government.
5. Residents have from 9 December 2014 to 16 February
2015 to have their say about where ward boundaries for Cherwell should be
drawn. The Commission will consider all submissions and aims to publish its
final recommendations in May 2015. Once the Commission agrees its final
recommendations it will lay a draft order in both Houses of
Parliament. Parliament will then have 40 days in which to consider the
recommendations. If both Houses are satisfied with the recommendations, the
draft order will be ‘made’ and the new wards will come into effect at the
council elections in May 2016.