Labour leader warns of ‘irrational’ new Lichfield and Burntwood boundaries

Dec 2, 2013 by Ross

New electoral ward boundaries across Lichfield and Burntwood will be “irrational”, according the leader of the District Council’s Labour group.

The Local Government Boundary Commission for England (LGBCE) has called for the number of councillors in the region to fall from 56 to 47.

The process will see a wards redrawn in a bid to balance the population per councillor.

But Lichfield District Council’s Labour opposition group leader, Cllr Steve Norman, believes the LGBCE have made a snap decision.

Cllr Steve Norman

Cllr Steve Norman

“I am totally unsurprised by the Boundary Commission’s recommendations,” he said. “Even though there were only a tiny number of representations, the Commission always like to go through the pretence of listening to all the arguments.

“What I can guarantee is new irrational ward boundaries – because that is the Commission’s record.”

However, some of those who did submit their viewpoints during the consultation backed the cut, with the Beacon Street Area Residents’ Association (BSARA) describing it as “long overdue”.

“While there were some well argued representations – including BSARA – though they limited themselves to Lichfield City – many others showed a complete misunderstanding of how much money can be saved by having fewer elected members.

“I am completely relaxed about the proposed reduction, though it will be interesting to see how the Commission arrived at this figure.”

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  1. One would hope that our Councillors will use their local knowledge to suggest rational ward boundaries and will hopefully form a cross-party working group to make recommendations to the Boundary Commission. The deadline is 03/Feb/2013.

    The review aims to deliver electoral equality for local voters – this means ensuring that each local Councillor represents roughly the same number of people so that the value of votes is the same regardless of where one lives in Lichfield District.

    The 10 Labour Party Councillors on the District Council represent the wards of Boney Hay, Chase Terrace, Chasetown, Fazeley and Summerfield. To achieve electoral equality with 47 Councillors, the number of Councillors in these wards would have to be cut from 12 to 9.5. That is without considering the impact of future house building plans.