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Council to make changes to ‘decision-making structure’

Friday, December 13th, 2019 7:17am

By Ewan Gawne - Local Democracy Reporter

Douglas Council has changed its decision-making structure ahead of the 2020 local authority general elections.

There’ll be fewer seats up for grabs during the April contest - the number of councillors is being cut from 18-12, with three representing each of the four new wards.

There’s concern amongst current members this will lead to an increased workload and greater time commitments for those who are elected.

As a result, changes have been made to the council’s five committees: executive, environmental services, pensions, regeneration and community, and housing.

The latter will now  come back under the executive committee’s ‘umbrella’ and report on policy and budgetary matters rather than operate independently.

With this added scrutiny, the need for an independent member to sit on the housing committee has also been deemed unnecessary.

Other changes to the authority’s constitution are also expected to come forward ahead of next year’s elections.

Council Leader David Christian explained that after April 2020, councillors will be expected to attend an average of 30 scheduled meetings.

A leaflet is also being prepared for prospective candidates to let them know what to expect from the role.

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