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Written Statement - Delaying the year of Local Government election in Anglesey

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Carl Sargeant, Minister for Local Government and Communities

In November 2011 I announced that I was minded to change the year in which the ordinary election of councillors in the County of the Isle of Anglesey would be held by one year from May 2012 to May 2013.  I did this in the light of the report by the Auditor General for Wales of 16 March 2011.  This recommended a programme of democratic renewal of the Council, including a review of their electoral arrangements by the Local Government Boundary Commission for Wales and that any changes should be implemented ahead of the next local government elections. In his report the Auditor General went on to recommend that should it not be possible to implement changes to electoral arrangements resultant from the Boundary Commission’s review ahead of the 2012 elections, consideration should be given to using the power under section 87 of the Local Government Act 2000 to delay the elections to May 2013.

I consulted with local government, political parties and other interested parties on this proposal.  I have now considered the matter and comments made and have decided to exercise my powers under section 87 of the Local Government Act 2000 to change the year in which the ordinary election of county councillors and town and community councillors on the Isle of Anglesey is to be held, from May 2012 to May 2013.

My decision will enable the Boundary Commission to conclude their review of electoral arrangements in County of Anglesey, for consideration to be given to their proposals and for any changes in councillor numbers and distribution to be brought into effect should I so decide.  It will also provide stability while the Council proceeds towards a wider recovery from the problems which the Auditor General described.

The Commissioners I appointed to run the council last March will remain in place until I am satisfied that the Council is able to manage its own affairs in a sustainable way. This will not depend on the timing of elections.  I am closely monitoring the progress the Council is making under the Commissioners’ stewardship and will make a further statement to the Assembly in due course.

I have made my decision as early as possible to provide adequate notice to those involved in the electoral process.

An Order will now be prepared to give effect to my decision.