Councillor Mrs Macpherson
Leader of the Council and Chairman of the General Purposes Committee
To consider the attached report.
Contact Officer: Craig Saunders (01296) 585043
Community Governance Reviews (CGR) were introduced through the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007 and were the successor to Parish Reviews that were carried out in the past.
The final approval of any changes is ordinarily a matter for the relevant Council with electoral responsibilities rather than central government. However, the Government has amended legislation to explicitly address situations where structural changes such as a community governance petition are received during a transition period to establish a new Council. This is the position locally and, as such, final approval of any structural changes rests with the Buckinghamshire Shadow Authority Executive.
The recommendations for changes from this CGR relate solely to Bierton-with-Broughton Parish area. The Local Government Boundary Commission for England still had the final say on consequential alterations that may be proposed to District wards or County divisions, although there are none stemming from this review.
On 2 July 2019, AVDC had received a petition from Kingsbrook and Broughton electors requesting that a Community Governance Review be conducted with a view to establishing Kingsbrook as a new Civil Parish separate from Bierton with Broughton, with its own Parish Council, in time for the next Parish Council elections in 2020. The petition also suggested that Broughton Hamlet would become a Parish Meeting and that the remainder of the Bierton with Broughton Parish and Broughton Crossing be re-named as “Bierton Parish”, comprising a Bierton Ward and the Oldhams Meadow Ward.
The commencement of this review had been approved by the General Purposes Committee at its meeting on 31 July 2019, with the terms of reference being to consider the following matters:-
· That Kingsbrook be established as a new Civil Parish separate from Bierton with Broughton, with its own Parish Council, in time for the May 2020 elections.
· That “Bierton with Broughton Parish” be renamed “Bierton Parish” (consisting of two wards – Bierton and Oldhams Meadow).
· That Broughton Hamlet become a “Parish Meeting”.
The draft recommendations for public consultation had been approved for consultation at the Committee’s meeting on 30 September 2019. The Committee was now being asked to approve the final recommendations for submission to the Buckinghamshire Shadow Authority Executive.
In this instance there are no matters which need to be referred to the Local Government Boundary Commission for England.
The attached appendix details information in relation to the three areas mentioned at paragraph 3.5 including:-
(i) Representations received in response to the initial consultation (held from 9 August 2019 to 6 September 2019).
(ii) Representations received on the draft recommendations (held from 11 October 2019 to 8 November 2019).
(iii) Final recommendations for consideration, including on the proposed number of Parish Councillors for the new Kingsbrook Parish Council and the Bierton Parish Council, along with reasons.
During the draft recommendations stage a consultation response had been received from the Bierton with Broughton Parish Council with a map proposing a change to the original boundary map that had been submitted with the Community Governance Petition. This was discussed in more detail in Appendix 1 to the Committee report with Map A being the original map submitted with the CG Petition and Map B being the map proposed by Bierton with Broughton Parish Council.
Following the Bierton with Broughton Parish Council response, a meeting had been held on Monday 4 November, 2019, between AVDC Officers, Bierton Parish Council representatives and one of the CG petitioners to discuss the amended boundary map and some of the work that would need to be done over the coming months if a new Kingsbrook Parish Council was to be established, subject to approval in due course by the Buckinghamshire Shadow Authority Executive.
Following that meeting, a further communication was received from Bierton with Broughton Parish Council on Tuesday 5 November, 2019, which recognised that the main priority for local people was to get approval of the new Kingsbrook Parish Council in advance of the 2020 elections. As such, and with a view to keeping the current consultation and process as simple as possible, the representatives from Bierton with Broughton Parish Council stated that they were content for the original map (Map A) submitted with the Community Governance Petition to go forward to the GP Committee and the Shadow Executive as the preferred option for the boundaries for the Bierton Parish Council, Kingsbrook Parish Council and the Broughton Hamlet Parish Meeting. It was further acknowledged that the Parish’s recent consultation response would not be put forward as the preferred option but would be duly noted.
Members were also informed that as the Kingsbrook Parish Council would not have been formed in time to precept for itself for 2020/21, in addition to the proposed recommendations to go forward to the Shadow Executive, an additional recommendation would need to be included asking the Shadow Executive to set a precept for a Kingsbrook Parish Council, should the Shadow Executive approve the creation of the new Parish Council.
Members considered the report, the feedback from the public consultation and the proposed future arrangements including any electoral consequences and, it was –
(1) That the proposals for change as set out in Appendix 1 to the Committee report be supported and recommended to the Buckinghamshire Shadow Executive for approval , namely:-
(i) That a new Parish Council be created for the Aylesbury East “Kingsbrook” housing development and be named “Kingsbrook Parish”.
(ii) That the area for the new Kingsbrook Parish Council should be as detailed in Map A that had been submitted with the Community Governance Petition, which proposed that the area be the same as for the current Ward of the Bierton with Broughton Parish.
(iii) That, based on future occupancy levels, the new Kingsbrook Parish Council should comprise 9 Parish Councillors.
(iv) That the Broughton Hamlet Ward of the current Broughton with Bierton Parish area become a Parish Meeting, to be named “Broughton Hamlet”.
(v) That the remainder of the Bierton with Broughton Parish (i.e. the remainder of the current Bierton with Broughton Parish area that is not a part of the arrangements for Kingsbrook and Broughton Hamlet Parishes), and following the decisions made at recommendations 1(i) – (iv) inclusive and including Broughton Crossing, be re-named as “Bierton Parish”, comprising a Bierton Ward and the Oldhams Meadow Ward.
(vi) That the Bierton Parish Council should comprise 9 Parish Councillors, comprising 8 Parish Councillors for the Bierton Ward and one Parish Councillor for the Oldhams Meadow Ward.
(2) That should the Shadow Executive approve recommendations 1 (i) – (vi) inclusive, it also be recommended to authorise Officers to:-
(i) Make a Reorganisation Order under the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007 to implement the outcome of the review, with a view to the new arrangements being implemented in time for the next Parish Council elections in 2020.
(ii) Take any further action that may be necessary to complete the review and implement the new arrangements.