MAIDSTONE BOROUGH COUNCIL
13 APRIL 2022
REPORT OF THE DEMOCRACY AND GENERAL PURPOSES COMMITTEE HELD ON 9 MARCH 2022
LOCAL GOVERNMENT BOUNDARY REVIEW – WARD SCHEME CONSULTATION RESPONSE
Issue for Decision
To consider the recommended ward scheme and the supporting explanation and decide whether they should be the Council’s formal submission to the Local Government Boundary Commission for England.
That the ward scheme and supporting explanation, set out at Appendix 1 and Appendix 2 of the reference, be approved as the Council’s formal submission to the Local Government Boundary Commission for England as part of the Council’s Local Government Boundary Review.
Reasons for Recommendation
At its meeting on 9 March 2022, the Democracy and General Purposes Committee considered the ward scheme consultation response. The purpose of the review is to achieve electoral equality across the Borough, with strong consideration of communities and maintaining effective local government. Members have contributed throughout the process through workshops, a drop-in event and individual conversations. Groups and individuals were able to submit proposals directly to the Local Government Boundary Commission for England (LGBCE) with supporting evidence.
In expressing support for the proposal and acknowledgement that it satisfied the LGBCE’s criteria, the Committee recognised the complexity of producing a ward scheme that all Members would be content with.
Alternatives Considered and Why Not Recommended
The Council could decide not to submit a consultation response to the LGBCE. The Council’s role in the consultation is to provide a submission that meets the LGBCE’s statutory objectives and makes the most convincing case for a warding scheme that benefits Maidstone. Not submitting a response would result in the Commission imposing a new ward scheme on the Council or at least considering a ward scheme with no input from the Council.
Report to the Democracy and General Purposes Committee, 9 March 2022: Local Government Boundary Review – Ward Scheme Consultation Response
Appendix 1 – Proposed Ward Scheme – Maps
Appendix 2 – Proposed Ward Scheme – Boundary Explanation