Agenda and minutes

Electoral Review Committee - Tuesday, 31st October, 2023 7.30 pm

Venue: Conference Room 1 - The Forum. View directions

Contact: Corporate & Democratic Support  01442 228209

No. Item



No minutes to be agreed.


There were no minutes to be agreed.



Apologies for absence

To receive any apologies for absence.


There were no apologies for absence.



Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest.


There were no declarations of interest.



Public Participation


There was no public participation.



Revised Parliamentary Boundaries pdf icon PDF 348 KB


M Anderson advised they were changing from two to three constituencies in Dacorum. The Hemel Hempstead constituency will remain with Dacorum. The South West Herts constituency falls under Three Rivers District Council and Dacorum would be liaising with them over any registration issues for the Kings Langley area. The new constituency was Harpenden and Berkhamsted, which will be run by St Albans District Council. Dacorum will be handing over Berkhamsted, Tring and surrounding areas to them but liaising with them closely as it will be Dacorum’s register. The Polling Place Order needed to be updated as a result.


There were no questions.


The committee noted the outcome of the parliamentary boundary review.



Polling District & Polling Place review pdf icon PDF 960 KB


M Anderson highlighted the key points in the report.


Polling district BAB to move into polling district BAA to tidy up the registers with regards to polling day to try and reduce the paperwork amount for the polling stations.


Nash House to move from polling district AFAA (Apsley Corner Hall Ward) to polling district BA (Nash Mills Ward) as this was set up incorrectly.


Polling district boundary of ALB to be amended to accommodate the whole of Woodfield Road, Leverstock Green. It was proposed the boundary line should be moved to the back of the houses on the edge of Bunkers Park to incorporate the whole street, this would affect 20 properties. Electors would be advised accordingly if it were to go through.


A change of polling station in Chipperfield was proposed to move from Chipperfield Youth Club to Chipperfield Village Hall which was next door. This had come about following the previous election when doing risk assessments for the polling station. It was deemed the village hall would be a great location for a polling station after a site visit and the people running the hall had no problems with DBC using the space. The village hall staff were keen as they were hoping footfall there would increase awareness of the village hall as a place to hire. The youth club have also been advised and they didn't have any specific thoughts.


There was a recommendation for a new polling placing in the Boxmoor ward as the previous had been demolished. Around 600 electors had been temporarily moved to Warners End Community Centre as a polling station even though this fell into the Chaulden and Warners End ward. A site visit was carried out at the Hemel Hempstead Methodist Church in the middle of the polling district. They were happy to be used and they had been granted usage of downstairs rooms with good access and parking facilities.


The Polling District and Polling Places review had to be carried out every five years. This was started in September, went out for a six week consultation and any responses were included in the report.


The Chair asked who the Elections Claims Unit were. M Anderson responded they were the government department where they have to submit all expenditure claims for Parliamentary and Police and Crime Commissioner Elections.


Councillor Tindall asked if Chipperfield Hall and Methodist Hall were aware that if when a general election was called that they would need a Thursday clear and that they didn't have anything they wouldn't be able to shift around. M Anderson responded that they had discussed this at the site visit and that they were made aware of the potential limited notice. The Methodist Church have things booked in but arrangements had been made so they were in different rooms to avoid impact.


The following recommendations were agreed.


1.    That the following polling district amendments are implemented:

· Polling District BAB (Nash Mills Ward) to move to Polling District BAA (Nash Mills Ward)

· Nash  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.


Polling Place Order pdf icon PDF 571 KB


M Anderson advised they needed to update the Polling District & Polling Place Order based on what the committee had agreed. She had prepared a copy of the document which included the new constituencies, the new polling places listed and the merged polling districts for Nash Mills. This would need to be referred to full council in November to approve.


There were no questions.


The committee agreed to recommend the updated Polling Districts and Polling Places Order to the full council.



Electoral Review (Presentation)


M Anderson shared a comprehensive presentation to the committee on the Electoral Review.


What is an electoral review?


M Anderson noted that every fifteen years the LGBCE (Local Government Boundary Commission England) will come to a council and recommend they carry out an electoral review. The last time Dacorum had this was in 2006 and thus they were due to conduct one. The review considers the electoral arrangements for the local authority, looking at the number of councillors, number of wards, boundaries between wards, names of each ward and the number of councillors elected to each ward.


What is the process?


Phase 1 is to look at councillor numbers. This would be based on a population forecast as at 2030, looking at five years beyond the end date of the review. Once councillor numbers have been agreed, they look at the warding arrangements across the borough. It is then taken through parliament when the order is laid, then finally moved onto the implementation phase.


Phase 1: councillor numbers


Councillor numbers are looked at based on a 2030 forecast. During the phase they are asked to make a case for a specific number of councillors they feel they should have. They can receive submissions from the council as one body or from individual councillors or political groups. They note every council is unique and that therefore there is no policy as to whether recommendation should be made for councillor numbers to change or not. They stress that any submission made must be based on evidence and have supporting documents with it. The submission deadline for this phase is the 11th of March 2024.


Considerations to include are looking at the governance arrangements of the council, how decisions are made across all the responsibilities, council scrutiny functions relating to decision making and responsibilities from outside organisations. They also look at the representation or role of councillors in the local community and how they engage with people, conduct casework and represent local partner organisations.


Phase 2: warding arrangements


The local community then has two opportunities to give their views which are then consulted on. The first consultation on the warding arrangements will run from the 7th of May 2024 to 15th of July 2024. They consider all the responses and consult on draft proposals from the 1st of October 2024 to the 9th of December 2024. They publish the final proposals on the 1st of April 2025. Dacorum don't look at any of the consultation responses and everything goes back to the commission. Submissions must be based on three statutory criteria, which are electoral equality, community identities and interests and looking at effective and convenient local government.




The implementation will be at the next local elections in 2027.


Effective representations


For an effective submission they looking at rationale, not assertion. They also want to see people highlighting things they like and not just what they don't like, suggestion of alternatives, practical community examples and consideration of all statutory criteria.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.