Bexley residents will be electing 30% fewer Councillors from 2018, after the Local Government Boundary Commission published its final plans for new wards across the Borough.
The review, formally triggered by Bexley’s Conservative Council, will mean that rather than the 63 Councillors who have been elected every 4 years since 2002, from now on, there will be only 45 elected, starting from the next local elections.
This delivers in full the Bexley Conservatives 2014 local election manifesto pledge to cut the number of Councillors, exactly as promised.
It follows delivery of the pledge to freeze Councillor allowances, a freeze that has been in place since 2009, and which means in real terms, allowances have actually been cut year after year.
Alongside that, Councillors in Bexley have claimed virtually no expenses.
Bexley Conservatives are the only group of Councillors in the UK to have voluntarily initiated a Boundary Commission review explicitly to reduce the number of Councillors.
A Conservative spokesman said:
“We pledged we would cut the number of Councillors, having already delivered our previous pledge to freeze Councillor allowances.
It cannot be right to reduce costs elsewhere in the Council but leave Councillors untouched. That is why we made the pledge in our 2014 election campaign.”
The decisions are specific ward sizes and arrangements are not taken by political parties, but by the independent Local Government Boundary Commission for England.