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Community Governance Review - have your say on recommendations

Last Modified June 21, 2022
The final round of consultation on how local communities in Hertsmere are governed is currently underway, with residents being asked to give their views on proposed recommendations.

The Community Governance Review examines if governance arrangements at parish council level can be improved to better reflect local identities and serve communities more effectively.

As communities change over time, government guidance advises a review of town and parish governance every ten to 15 years, to ensure the arrangements are fit for purpose. Following the Local Government Boundary Commission for England (LGBCE) review of Hertsmere in 2018, changes were made to the borough’s ward boundaries. 

The review looks at a range of issues, including parish boundaries, numbers of parish councillors, grouping of parishes and warding.

In January 2022, Hertsmere Borough Council started a nine-week consultation exercise to explore whether changes need to be made to ensure our parish councils continue to be effective representatives of their residents and have appropriate boundaries. The results of the initial consultation - which are available to view on our website - were presented to the Constitutional and Member Development Panel who, with the help of officers, have made a number of recommendations. 

Residents are being asked to have their say on the recommendations proposed for Aldenham Parish Council, Ridge Parish Council, South Mimms Parish Council and Shenley Parish Council.

Councillor Morris Bright MBE, Leader of the Council and Portfolio Holder for Communications, said: “The review is intended to ensure that residents across the borough are represented in the best possible way. Parish councils have a wide range of important responsibilities, which can include parks, village greens, playing fields, allotments, local events and activities, Christmas lights, public clocks and war memorials. They can also have great influence on decisions taken elsewhere, for example, they are consulted by the local planning authority on every planning application in their area.

“Communities change over time and it is vital that councils continue to reflect trends and have a real identity. This review and the proposals in the consultation offers the opportunity to ensure that parish arrangements meet local needs and are fit for purpose for the future. It’s important we keep local decision-making to give residents effective and accountable local representation.

“Thank you to everyone who took part in the initial consultation carried out earlier this year. Based on that feedback our Constitutional and Member Development Panel along with officers have made a number of recommendations, which we are asking residents to look at and comment on. I would urge local people to read all the relevant information on our website and then give us your comments using the online survey. 

"Any changes will only be adopted after they have been consulted upon to take account of the views of residents, parish councils and other stakeholders. I would urge people to share their views with the council via the online consultation on our website.”

The deadline for the second round of public consultation is midnight on Sunday 31 July. To view the recommendations and have your say, please visit: www.hertsmere.gov.uk/CGR

Paper copies of the consultation can also be obtained on request by calling Electoral Services on 020 8207 7481 or email CGR@hertsmere.gov.uk

This review of community governance does not include the electoral arrangements for borough council or parliamentary seats. These would be the responsibility of Whitehall (the Local Government Boundary Commission and the Boundary Commission for England, respectively) and are not currently proposed.

Hertsmere Borough Council agreed to the community government review at its meeting on 17 November 2021. The review must be completed within 12 months and any agreed changes will be implemented by May 2023 ready for the whole borough and parish elections.  

The review will encompass Aldenham Parish Council, Ridge Parish Council, Shenley Parish Council and South Mimms Parish Council.

To find out more about the review, see the recommendations made for each parish or to complete the survey, please visit our Community Governance Review page.

Posted on Monday 20th June 2022

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