Yoxall Parish Council

Yoxall Parish Council

 

Proposed Boundary changes to affect Yoxall. Have your say.

Aug 13, 2020

Letter to be sent by Julia Jessel in response to proposed boundary changes affecting Yoxall and other.

Dear Residents,

The Local Government Boundary Commission have recently issued their proposals for boundary changes for consultation which affect our local area, I believe in a negative way. They have undertaken the review with population numbers being the principal criteria but not allowing sufficient importance to local communities. It is important that as local residents you make your views known.

The best place to submit comments before September 7th is :-

https://consultation.lgbce.org.uk/

As your local Staffordshire County Councillor I will be responding along the following lines:

Dear Sir/Madam
I recognise the difficult task the LGBCE have had during the pandemic in determining new ward boundaries for ESBC and thank them for their work. This was understandably more difficult owing to the building of new homes in certain parts of the Borough and no firm consensus on a preferred option by Borough Councillors, although their Cabinet agreed there should be 37 councillors.
I agree with that decision and believe as a fundamental point that there should be 37 councillors not 36.
The reason I put this forward is it significantly reduces the opportunity of a hung council, or split decision, which would be then dependent on the Mayor’s casting vote. For local government to be effective, it needs to be decisive and a hung council makes achieving this much more difficult. An odd number goes some way to lower the chance of this. It also makes the community representation easier to fulfil rather than a sheer numbers per councillor.
I support most of the recommendations, keeping communities together as in Bagots and Crown Wards are good decisions, and broadly agree the proposals to the east of the River Trent subject to minor boundary changes around Winshill and Brizlincote. However I am concerned about your proposals for Outwoods Parish. One of your guiding principles is that parishes should form the fundamental building blocks of district/borough wards however under the current proposals, Outwoods Parish Council would have nine Borough Councillors from three separate wards in attendance at their meetings. Given the large proportion of East Staffordshire’s future housing growth that will be delivered in Outwoods, I believe the Parish should have its own Borough Councillor.

We also note that some rural areas have been appended to urban areas as around Uttoxeter and Burton, such as Stramshall, Bramshall, Outwoods, Yoxall, Barton and Tatenhill and Rangemore. These rural villages are in danger of becoming a forgotten rural hinterland with urban issues submerging their distinct rural communities. They are completely distinct communities in their own right.
Having 37 councillors, and as a result a reduced population represented by each councillor, would help your task in allocating ward areas to councillors and provide communities with better representation in the sparse areas and provide a single councillor for Outwoods.
The wards must be more than just a population numbers but also about communities and their democratic representation.

Kind regards,


Julia Jessel | Cabinet Member for Environment, Infrastructure and Climate Change
County Councillor for Needwood Division
: 01543 473671/07966342019
: julia.jessel@staffordshire.gov.uk
: www.staffordshire.gov.uk