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Harrietsham Parish Council - Increase in Number of Councillors

 

MAIDSTONE BOROUGH COUNCIL

 

Council

 

Wednesday 25 February 2015

 

REPORT OF HEAD OF FINANCE & RESOURCES

 

Report prepared by Paul Riley 

 

 

1.           Harrietsham Parish Council - Increase in Number of Councillors

 

1.1        Issue for Decision

1.1.1   On 10 December 2014 the Council confirmed a request to consider an increase in the number of Parish Councillors on Harrietsham Parish Council. This confirmation commenced a community governance review including public consultation.

In undertaking any Review, the Council will be guided by the following legislation:

 

·            Part 4 of the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007:

·            Local Government (Parishes and Parish Councils) (England) Regulations 2008 (SI2008/625);

·            Local Government Finance (New Parishes) Regulations 2008 (SI2008/626)

·            Relevant parts of the Local Government Act 1972

1.1.2     This report provides Council with the results of the Consultation and the final opportunity to approve the requested increase in Councillors.

 

1.2        Recommendation of Head of Finance & Resources

1.2.1     That the Council resolves to make an Order to increase the number of parish councillors on Harrietsham Parish Council from nine (9) to eleven (11).

1.2.2     That this final decision is published appropriately.

 

1.3        Reasons for Recommendation

1.3.1     The LGPIH Act 2007 provides the Council with the power to take decisions in relation to the electoral arrangements of Parishes. Since February 2008 the Council has had responsibility for undertaking community governance reviews and considering the electoral arrangements of an existing or proposed Parish. Consideration of the electoral arrangements includes:

a)     The ordinary year of election;

b)     The number of Councillors to be elected; and

c)      The need to divide a Parish into wards.

 

1.3.2   Harrietsham Parish Council has requested that the Council consider increasing the number of Councillors on its Council from nine to eleven on the basis of the number of Electors in the Parish.

1.3.3     The Council considered the request on 10 December 2014 and agreed to commence a community governance review, details of the review are given at Appendix A. As the Council has an adopted scale for the number of Councillors based on electorate size, the review only required public consultation.

1.3.4   The scale adopted by the Council is given in the table below and Harrietsham Parish Council electors totalled 1,608 at the time of the decision to commence the review in December 2014.

Number of Electors

Number of Councillors

Up to 250 electors

5 Councillors

251-700 electors

7 Councillors

701-1350 electors

9 Councillors

1351-2200 electors

11 Councillors

2201-3250 electors

13 Councillors

3251-4500 electors

15 Councillors

Over 4500 electors

At the discretion of the Council



1.3.5     The Council has now completed the necessary consultation and the results are as follows:

In favour of the proposal     =       6

Against the proposal           =       5

No response                      =   1597

 

 

1.3.6   As the results of the consultation are marginal and not significant given the size of the electorate, it is proposed that the Council approve the request based upon the adopted scale and instruct officers to make the necessary order and publish the details.

1.4        Alternative Action and why not Recommended

1.4.1   The Council could decide not to approve the increase however it is clear that

the size of the Parish already suggests an increase in line with the adopted scale and current levels of development suggest this will increase in the near future.

1.5        Relevant Documents

1.5.1   Appendix A – Harrietsham – Terms of Reference