MP ‘celebrates’ councillor cut

PUBLISHED: 17:55 09 January 2013

Archant

WESTON MP John Penrose is ‘celebrating’ North Somerset Council’s decision to reduce its number of councillors.

The Conservative MP believes taxpayers’ money will be saved by the local authority’s efforts to cut the number of its members.

Currently the council has 61 members but plans are being discussed which would see the number reduced to 46 or 51.

The exact changes will be determined following an independent Local Government Boundary Commission for England survey.

Voters are being asked to give their opinions on key issues such as the number, names and boundaries of the council’s wards.

But the general consensus that a change is needed has been backed by Mr Penrose.

He said: “The more politicians you have, the more expenses, red tape and taxes you’ve got to deal with, whether it’s MPs or local councillors.

“That’s why I’m absolutely delighted that this reform is moving ahead.

“I argued in favour of fewer politicians at the last general election so this is a great opportunity to save taxpayers some of their hard-earned money.”

The idea of reducing the number of councillors was first mooted around 18 months ago.

Any reduction will also help save money at a time when the council is looking to save more than £86million across the next five years. Each councillor draws a basic allowance in excess of £8,000 a year.

You can share your views on the planned council reform by visiting consultation.lgbce.org.uk.


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