A motion is set to be put to Torbay Council later this month that could see the number of councillors on Torbay Council reduced by the time of the next local elections in 2019. Liberal Democrat Group Leader on Torbay Council Steve Darling said, “At a time when the Mayor is consulting on £32 million of cuts to the council, we as the Liberal Democrat group feel it is appropriate to take a serious look at the number of councillors we have on Torbay Council. By bringing in the Boundary Commission we can ensure there is a professional review of the roles and responsibility of elected members following eight years of cuts to staff, expenditure and outsourcing of functions.”
The motion is set to be debated at the next Full Council meeting on the 10th December 2015. It reads as follows :
Notice of Motion – Electoral Review of the Number of Councillors for Torbay Council
The Council notes that the last Electoral Review for Torbay Council was carried out in 2001. Since that time there has been:
a continuous reduction in the number of staff resulting in a reduction from 1455 full time equivalent staff in March 2010 to 890 full time equivalent staff in October 2015;
a number of significant changes in the way the Council operates, in particular the establishment of the:
Integrated Care Organisation for adult social care and health and
proposed transfer of Children’s Services into the ICO
the development of the Torbay Development Agency and continuation Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust
commissioning of services such as the contract with TOR2; and
the growth of academy schools in Torbay which have left only a residual Local Education Authority function.
The change to the way the Council now operates means that there is reduced engagement for Councillors as many of the operational decisions are made outside of the Council chamber.
Therefore, this Council resolves:
that the Assistant Director of Corporate and Business Services be requested to develop a business case for submission to the Local Government Boundary Commission for England requesting an electoral review to reduce the number of Councillors in Torbay to come into effect from May 2019.
Proposed by Councillor S Darling
Seconded by Councillor C Carter
Contact Steve Darling 07443425503