The independent Local Government Boundary Commission for England has published its final recommendations for new electoral arrangements for East Dorset District Council.
This follows a 12-week public consultation on its draft proposals and draws new boundaries for each council ward across the district.
The Commission’s final recommendations propose that East Dorset should be represented by 29 councillors in the future, seven fewer than the current arrangements. The recommendations also propose that those councillors should represent seven single-member, five two-member and four three-member wards across the district.
Max Caller, Chair of the Commission, said: “We are extremely grateful to the people of East Dorset who took the time and effort to send us their views. The Commission considered every piece of evidence it received before finalising these recommendations.
“Across the district, we have sought to balance the views expressed to us by local people with the criteria we must apply when we are deciding on new electoral arrangements. As such, we believe these recommendations deliver electoral equality for voters as well as reflecting the identities of communities across East Dorset.”
In response to the views submitted during the consultation, the Commission proposes some changes to the draft recommendations it put forward in April.
In the Verwood and Crane area, the Commission proposes to move away from its original recommendations so that the Albion Way area is included in the Verwood West ward and not in Crane ward as previously proposed.
In response to submissions made to it during public consultation, the Commission also proposes to rename Heath & Moors ward as West Moors & Holt.
Elsewhere, the Commission confirms its draft recommendations as final.
The proposed new arrangements must now be implemented by Parliament. A draft order – the legal document which brings into force the recommendations – will be laid in Parliament in the coming months. The draft Order provides for the new electoral arrangements to come into force at the council elections in 2015.