Changes in store at elec­tion

Coun­cil­lors and wards cut

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - By Jack Abell jack.abell@trin­i­tymir­

VOT­ERS in South Bucks will elect fewer coun­cil­lors to rep­re­sent them when they go to the bal­lot box in May.

The South Bucks Dis­trict Coun­cil elec­tions take place on the same day as the gen­eral elec­tion, on May 7, 2015.

The dis­trict coun­cil is re­duc­ing the num­ber of mem­bers from 40 to 28 and have al­tered the elec­toral bound­aries to re­flect the re­duc­tion in coun­cil­lor num­bers.

The change fol­lows rec­om­men­da­tions from the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Bound­ary Com­mis­sion.

The changes mean that in Ger­rards Cross, for ex­am­ple, rather than the ward be­ing split into three as it is now, with Ger­rards Cross South, Ger­rards Cross North and Ger­rards Cross East and Den­ham South West as wards, there will sim­ply be one, to be named the Ger­rards Cross ward, with a to­tal of three coun­cil­lors rep­re­sent­ing it.

The to­tal num­ber of wards is be­ing cut from 19 to 12, which means that some peo­ple will be vot­ing at dif­fer­ent polling sta­tions from usual and will find them­selves in a dif­fer­ent ward.

The coun­cil says that while the changes are not fi­nan­cially mo­ti­vated, there are likely to be ben­e­fits, with mem­bers’ al­lowances sav­ings of £50,000 an­tic­i­pated.

Coun­cil chief ex­ec­u­tive Alan Goodrum said although some coun­cil­lors will lose their po­si­tions, he is ex­pect­ing a pos­i­tive re­sponse.

He said: “Coun­cil­lors wanted to do this. It’s what the Bound­ary Com­mis­sion came up with and it’s some­thing that peo­ple wanted to see.

“There will be some coun­cil­lors who will wish to re­tire or leave for other rea­sons.”

The re­view aims to en­sure that each coun­cil­lor will rep­re­sent wards of a sim­i­lar size pop­u­la­tion. Some coun­cil­lors cur­rently have larger wards than oth­ers. The bound­ary changes are ex­pected to be rub­ber-stamped by par­lia­ment after Jan­uary.

Coun­cil demo­cratic and elec­toral ser­vices man­ager Kully Tum­ber said: “It’s go­ing to be the most com­pli­cated elec­tions ever in South Bucks and is the first time there has been par­lia­men­tary elec­tions and lo­cal elec­tions on the same day.

“It’s very im­por­tant that we get the mes­sage out to peo­ple so they know what is hap­pen­ing.”

Visit www.get­ uk for maps of the new bound­aries

ON TOUR: Mem­bers of the group at Wad­des­don Manor

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