New proposals that would see Ashfield district gaining two more councillors and a greater number of smaller wards are being consulted on by the Local Government Boundary Commission for England.
Residents have until 8th April 2014 to have their say on the draft recommendations which have been put together after a number of submissions were put forward for new warding arrangements.
Under the plans, Ashfield will be split into 28 wards - a large increase from the current 15 - but with the vast majority of these being single councillor wards.
According to the consultation document, the Commission’s proposals have been ‘based broadly’ on Coun Jason Zadrozny’s submission rather than the ideas submitted by Ashfield District Council itself.
The document states: “We noted the council’s proposals but considered that Coun Zadrozny put forward significantly stronger community identity evidence for his proposals.
“We do however propose moving away from his proposals in a number of areas to strengthen boundaries or to provide better electoral equality.”
Max Caller CBE, chairman of the Commission, said that the aim of the review is 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,” he said.
“We also want to ensure that our proposals reflect the interests and identities of local communities across Ashfield district and that the pattern of wards can help the council deliver effective local government to local people.”
In rural Ashfield, the council and Coun Zadrozny put forward similar proposals and the recommendations are for single-member wards of Jacksdale and Underwood and a two-member Selston ward.
In Kirkby, the Commission considered Coun Zadrozny’s ideas secured good levels of electoral equality and used strong boundaries, so it adopted these without amendment.
They are to have a two-member Annesley and Kirkby Woodhouse ward and single-member wards for Old Kirkby, Kingsway, Hollinwell, Kirkby Central, Greenwood and Lower Coxmoor.
For the Sutton area, a large number of respondents to the earlier consultation objected to Huthwaite being included in a ward with Teversal.
Coun Zadrozny’s proposals avoided this and so the Commission has based its recommendations on his plans, subject to a number of amendments.
The proposals now being consulted on show a three-member Huthwaite and St Mary’s ward, two-member wards at Skegby and at King’s Mill and Sutton Lawns, with single-member wards at Stanton Hill and Teversal, Carsic, Quarrydale, Sutton Central, Ashfield, Leamington and Sutton Junction and Harlow Wood.
The Hucknall proposals are for a two-member Wighay and Leen Mills ward and single-member wards at Whyburn, Beauvale, Hazelgrove, Westville, Broomhill, Butler’s Hill and Wigwam.
Residents are being urged to have their say on the proposals by writing or emailing to the Boundary Commission.
The information is available at consultation.lgbce.org.uk or hard copies are available at council buildings and libraries.