Laura Sharman 29 May 2014

Fylde to abolish cabinet system following referendum

Voters have forced Fylde Borough Council to abandon its cabinet structure and adopt a committee-based system, following a local referendum.

Fylde residents voted in favour of changes in governance by 57.8% to 42.2%. The decision marks the end of a six-year campaign by the Fylde Civic Awareness Group (FCAG) who felt the current system excluded the majority of councillors from the decision-making process.

FCAG used new powers introduced under the Localism Act to trigger a governance referendum, with more than 5% of voters signing a petition for change in October 2013.

The council must implement the changes by May 2015.

Tracy Morrison, Fylde Council’s counting officer and director of resources, said: ‘The change will involve the council keeping its existing regulatory committees with the establishment of four new committees around the policy areas of tourism and leisure; operational management; health and housing; and finance.

‘Each committee will be appointed by the council and will consist of representatives of the elected parties in proportion to their numbers on the council.

‘Council officers will now start the ball rolling for the establishment of the committees in May 2015. The cabinet system will apply until then as the business of the council will have to continue to be conducted.’

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