Online survey to help shape new council for west Suffolk ahead of decision by Local Government Boundary Commission for England
The move to create a single council for west Suffolk is being put to groups, councils and the public to help shape the new council ward boundaries.
St Edmundsbury and Forest Heath councils are going forward to create a single authority which is expected to result in some £800,000 in savings and efficiencies as well as the annual £4 million already saved by existing shared services between the two councils.
It is also expected to better support and meet challenges ahead, such as increasing population, more demands on health care and housing, alongside reduced national funding.
If Parliament approves proposals for the new council a new set of wards will have to be created before the elections of 2019.
A review will be carried out in the summer by the Local Government Boundary Commission for England who set ward boundaries for new councils.
The two councils are asking people to have their say in an on line questionnaire. While the warding review will not affect the external boundaries of either council or those of parish or town councils it will use those boundaries to create the district level wards.
Cllr John Griffiths, St Edmundsbury leader, said: “From the very beginning we have been clear that any new council should be designed to best serve our communities. Local knowledge and aspirations will be vital in helping form our proposals and arguments.” He added that there would also be formal engagement later.
Cllr James Waters, leader at Forest Heath, said: “Making sure people continue to have strong local representation is vital for the new council and local knowledge is important in making sure we get our proposals right.”
Go to survey to comment. It closes on February 12.